Reinventing the Bush ~ stories of inspiring young Australians (2008 ABC Books, now HarperCollins)
Beyond the steady diet of drought, debt and despair about the bush in our media, something exciting is happening…
Extract from the Introduction
Thirty per cent of young Australians live outside the coastal capitals. You’ll find them in cities and smaller communities, on farms and scattered throughout the outback, yet rarely do you hear their voices. The constant babble of bad news about the bush tends to drown out a growing trickle of stories of hope, change and progress.
Picture a tiny child facing pirates as she escaped Saigon on a dilapidated boat, or a young man trapped in his autistic world finding a way to communicate. Imagine how an Aboriginal teenager felt when asked by Tribal elders to lead his people, or the reaction of a young farmer, lying in hospital with a fractured spine, when she was told to forget her work and find a husband to care for her. These defining moments were, respectively, woven into conversations in the Riverland with Lisa Nguyen, over a kitchen table with Glen Sheppard, around a campfire with Murrandoo Yanner and on Deb McLucas’s farm. They shed light on what made each person tick and how their characters had been shaped by the precipices and pinnacles of youth.
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