Saturday, May 28, 2011

Who will defend New England?

I guess I need to start this post with an apology to my colleagues for my non-delivery on certain matters. They will understand what I mean.

In Western Australia, Premier Barnett is staring the Feds down. One can argue for or against the WA position, but no-one can deny, I think, that the Premier is standing up for the people of WA. In New England, we have no-one standing up for us against either Sydney or Canberra.

Just at the moment, I am trying to complete several posts on the Grattan report, Investing in regions: Making a difference. This very bad think tank report argues, among other things, that resources should be redistributed from universities like UNE, SCU or Newcastle to those in Sydney, that resources should be redistributed from low growth areas like Newcastle to Western Sydney.

Newcastle a low growth area? Please excuse my under-breath comments!  

Today's post on my personal blog, People, biography & the New England tradition, was really a history post. However, a point was that the life, culture, history and thought of Northern NSW, my broader New England, had been largely written out of Australian discourse because it is seen as non existent or irrelevant.

In my history research and writing I see the linkages all the time. I also see the way in which local and regional causes have been constantly dismissed. You won't see the linkages in conventional history or writing more broadly. As I said, they have been written out of existence.  

Some of us including fellow bloggers are fighting to bring it back. We need your support.

You don't need to support New England self government, although many of us do. We just need you to tell the story of your own area and in doing to also focus on broader linkages.

This is what I try to do. Please join me.


Mark said...

This post has brought up something inside of me for a long time Jim. My local village and the seeming lack of history or so I thought of it. After many visits to the local library at Maitland, I've learn't a great deal about the village that I grew up in. I might not write a thorough history about it but may down the track begin to document and blog about what is left of it before it turns from rural countryside into a small town of 15000 people. Thanks.

Jim Belshaw said...

Mark, please do write or blog something.

The post that I referred to in this one drew out in part the importance of such work. Many people don't write because they think that they lack skills. Yet if you properly source your material - that's important to allow others to follow up - all writing of this type is important. It is the combined effect of all our work that counts.