The Life and Death of Harold Holt

Tom Frame
AUD $35.00
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The first full length biography of Australia's most enigmatic prime minister.

When Harold Holt disappeared while swimming off Victoria's Cheviot Beach just before Christmas 1967, Australia was given one of its great and enduring mysteries. The death of Australia's seventeenth prime minister has remained part of popular imagination ever since.

Harold Holt's death had both immediate and long-term consequences for the Australian nation. Not only did it lose a prime minister active in the rejuvenation of its social life and domestic policy, it also lost a key advocate for Australia's involvement in the Vietnam War. His disappearance created a power vacuum in conservative politics and crippled Australian foreign policy.

However, behind the continuing and often macabre interest in Holt's death lies the fascinating story of a once lonely young man who set his sights on becoming prime minister while still at university. The self-made Holt never deviated from this ambition, working hard to acquire an aura of privilege and success.

The Life and Death of Harold Holt is the first full-length biography of one of Australia's most enigmatic prime ministers. It presents a detailed and searching profile of a man who longed for power but found ultimately that its exercise demanded more of him than he was able to give.

Author bio:

Dr Tom Frame is the Anglican Bishop to the Australian Defence Force and a respected historian. He has written seventeen books, including a best-selling account of the mysterious loss of the cruiser HMAS Sydney in 1941. His most recent book for Allen and Unwin is The Cruel Legacy: the tragedy of HMAS Voyager. He lives in Canberra with his wife Helen and their two teenage daughters.

Category: Biography & Autobiography
ISBN: 9781741146721
Table Of Contents: Foreword The Honourable Peter Costello, MP ix

Introduction: A life that should have overshadowed a death xi

Acknowledgments xviii

The Life

1 A lonely life, 1908-40 3

2 The early years 9

3 Laying the foundations, 1940-49 20

4 Halcyon days, 1950-58 41

5 Heir apparent 54

6 Immigration, 1950-56 64

7 Labour and National Service, 1950-58 76

8 Patience and persistence, 1958-65 99

9 The bloodless succession, January-February 1966 131

And Death

10 From good to better, March-December 1966 157

11 'All the Way': External Affairs, 1966-67 174

12 From bad to worse, January-October 1967 204

13 Controversy and complaint, November-14 December 1967 225

14 Fate and destiny, 15 December 1967-12 March 1968 246

15 Myths and mysteries?, 1968-2005 272

16 The legacy 296

Appendix 1: Milestones in Harold Holt's career 309

Appendix 2: Holt ministries 313

Note on sources 317

Notes 319

Index 357
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Imprint: Allen & Unwin
Pub Date: August 2005
Page Extent: 408
Format: Paperback - C format
Age: 0 - 0
Subject: Biography: general