RADICAL SYDNEY / RADICAL HISTORY: RADICAL RUMINATIONS

RADICAL RUMINATIONSThis Page publishes ‘diary’ style individualised entries by Rowan Cahill and Terry Irving on matters relating to the theory, practice, and living, of radical history, and radical scholarship. Each entry is dated, and attributed to its respective author. Neither author necessarily agrees with, nor necessarily endorses, the views expressed by his fellow ruminant.++++++HISTORY MANI have before me a copy of the latest book by John Tognolini, A History Man’s Past & Other People’s Stories: A Shared Memoir, Part One: Other People’s Wars (2015). This is not a  brief title, and had the book come via a mainstream publisher and gone through the hands of a marketing person, rather than  the ebook self-publishing manner in which John publishes (this is his fourth book), it would no doubt have had a less cumbersome title, maybe just A History Man’s Past. But John does not operate this way, and if I was asked to name a favourite Australian radical/commentator/author, I would probably bypass the famous and the well-known and nominate ‘John Tognolini’. I’ll return to the ‘why’ of this later. John TognoliniFirst, A History Man’s Past. The ‘history man’ of the title is John. He has a passion for history from a leftist perspective. Employment-wise and professionally, he is a secondary school history teacher in rural NSW (Australia). This book is a collection of his writings, and interviews he has conducted, on the theme of war and militarisation, exploring why it is that Australia has been at war for much of its time as a nation as the junior partner of either Britain or the United States. As the reader soon learns, war is part of the Tognolini’s family. Four of his uncles went to World War 1, the youngest, his namesake ‘John/Jack’, on the Western Front aged sixteen or seventeen, a boy-soldier who lied about his age to enlist. Gallipoli veteran Andrew Tognolini died shortly after the war.

Source: RADICAL SYDNEY / RADICAL HISTORY: RADICAL RUMINATIONS

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