Westerly Centre

Swan Song: Reflections on Perth and Western Australia 1956-1995

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Swan Song is a major retrospective collection of writings in which George Seddon turns his attention to Western Australia, offering present reflections on his past attitudes and on recent changes to Western Australian life and landscape.

These essays are enormously enjoyable, often provocative and always informative.


  • List of illustrations
  • Acknowledgements


  • Essaying the essay
  • Musical chairs

Part I: The newcomer (1956-1971)

  • Introduction to Part I
  • First responses
  • In praise of limestone
  • A sense of place

Part II: The outsider (1972-1988)

  • Introduction to Part II
  • Whither the West
  • Western Australia: Some changing perceptions
  • The people of Perth
  • Hesperian birthday: the Western Australian sesquicentenary celebration series
  • Limitations and virtues
  • The persistance of place: Western Australian literature
  • Black and white in the West
  • The Rottnest experience
  • Some notes on the geography of education
  • Figures in a landscape

Part III: Recycled (1989-1994 )

  • Introduction to Part III
  • Starting again: The migratory gardener
  • The birth of Snugglepot
  • Journeys through landscape: A discussion of the work of Richard Woldendorp
  • Articulating a sense of place
  • Notes on two places: Fremantle; Subiaco


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