Molony, John: Captain James Cook: Claiming the Great South Land

John Molony

Captain James Cook: Claiming the Great South Land, Connor Court, Brisbane, 2016

In a unique and compelling matching of Cook’s journal entries with the journals of others on the voyage, including Joseph Banks, Sydney Parkinson and James Matra, John Molony shapes a layered story of that first voyage, illustrated with a remarkable series of maps. Ultimately, this melding of voices brings to fitting and moving prominence the encounters of Cook and his men with the people and places of an ancient world and especially the Aborigines and Australia. With clear-sighted compassion, Molony locates this meeting of the old and new at the centre of Cook’s story. His original interpretation of the primary sources brings a palpable humanity to Cook’s voyage of ‘discovery’ and thus elevates the contemporary debate on our nation’s heritage. (blurb)

The book is reviewed for Honest History by John Myrtle. Another review from Ross Fitzgerald in The Spectator. A 2010 speech by Molony at Cooktown.

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