This authoritative new series describes the history, landscape, culture, economy and people of this continent. This title is also packed full of fascinating facts, maps and statistics. The vast region of the world that encompasses Australia, Oceania and Antarctica is full of contrasts, from the frozen Antarctic continent to the 'red' desert of central Australia to the tropical islands of Oceania. These different physical environments have influenced the histories and cultures of the diverse peoples who live in this region. Oceania and Antarctica are rich in natural resources that have been vigorously sought after, but this greedy exploitation has often severely damaged the landscapes and natural life in some of these areas. Australia is a highly industrialized nation with a prosperous economy while development in Oceania is severely affected by size, limited resources and distance from markets. This book introduces the diversity of Australia, Oceania and Antarctica, and explores the present and future realities and challenges for its nations and their peoples.
Kate Darian-Smith is Professor of Australian Studies and History at the University of Melbourne, Australia. She is the Director of the Australian Centre, an interdisciplinary research and teaching department which focuses on Australia's human and natural environments within their international context. Kate has previously taught in universities in the UK and the USA. She is the author and editor of several books on Australian history and society, including a number of books written for young people about Australia and the Asia-Pacific region. The consultant, Dr David Lowe, is a lecturer in Modern International and Australian History at Deakin University in Australia. He has published several works on the history of Australia in world affairs and especially on Australia and the Asia-Pacific region since the Second World War.