Book Review – “Romancing the Primitive”

ED: This review by Brian Hurlock hit my inbox while I was away.

From time to time, I come across a book which really ‘grabs’ me, and I then feel a compulsion to draw it to the attention of those I instinctively feel might appreciate it in a similar way to mine!

The latest Quadrant Publishing book, “Romancing the Primitive” – “The myth of the ecological Aborigine” – is turning out to be one such book. (I am only halfway through reading it!).

I wish I had it to read, about a month ago. Although I’ve had little trouble in my personal campaign to counter some of Comrade Albosleazy’s referenDUMB (sic) subterfuge and fraud, as encountered in my many hundreds of ‘debates’ on FB threads with yes-vote campaigners and trolls and genuine believers in their cause, I would certainly have appreciated having the book to borrow some wonderfully clear and appropriate quotes from it, to add more intellectual and factual weight to my personal opinions.

But hark! the need for the information does not end with the results of tomorrow’s poll (Sat 14th Oct). In many ways this period in our developing history is only perhaps “the end of the beginning” of a campaign which WILL be continued by assorted socialists/communists, separatists, racist narcissists, and other malcontents! And so I borrow the excerpt from one of the most famous speeches of the “Greatest Englishman”!

If we start with the false narrative which often surrounds Rousseau’s “Noble Savage” construct, William J. Lines takes us back to the very beginnings of collective villages, to small towns, to cities, to nation states, wherein there was always an element which blamed THEIR civilisation for denying them the opportunity to live in a type of Utopian world where Mankind didn’t need to toil and struggle to survive – where Nature provided and Man could live in perfect peace, contentment and leisure. To the extent where the malcontents actually believed, somewhere over the horizon such a place and a People still existed, for it and they had not yet been despoiled by “civilisation”.

Then, the author takes us forward, through the era of the Enlightenment, to the advent of socialism/communism; then, after its failures, to the Postmodern era (as I previously acknowledged, I’m only half way through the book, but I know the author will take us through to the beginnings
of Comrade Albosleazy’s racist, divisive, referenDUMB (sic) – to be decided tomorrow, Sat 14th Oct).

Increasingly now, the author is using the historical background, and realities of life, to expose how today’s myths about the ecological “caretaking” of the land was/is part of Aborigine “culture” (“culture” being another subject about which William J. Lines writes in depth).

And in writing about Aborigine “culture(s)”, before 1788, and for some time after, the author correctly highlights how today’s dreamers and fantasists conveniently strip away all the “nasties” of the “culture(s)” of the primitives, such as: sorcery based on animist superstitions; misogyny; wife-bashing, murder, and maiming; Infanticide; cannibalism (more widely practised, than many realise!); payback murders and maiming; constant raiding parties to kidnap young girls; paedophilia; unthinkable acts of cruelty to ‘initiate’ pubescent girls by cutting their vagina and hymen with a sharp object, pack-raping them, smearing the victim’s vaginal blood to mix with their own re-opened sub-incisions on the back side of their penis, and then doing ritualistic fertility dances. Stuff like that!

I know the author proceeds to ‘ take on’ the fraud Pascoe, and his “Dark Emu” work of absurd science fiction! And I am sure he is about to expose other myths being peddled by those who believe in the Australian version of the “Noble Savage”!

But there is a richness and an intellectual rigour about William J. Lines’ writing style. It’s been quite some time since I’ve had to go to my Collins Shorter to confirm the definition of so many words! I am sure Mr. Lines must have been fed on pages from a Thesaurus on a daily basis, from the time he was a baby! I found it a bit off-putting, at first, but I am now enjoying the richness and mental stimulation of it all.

So, for anyone interested in reading another fine thinker’s version of the philosophical progress of Mankind, but with examples of counter-culture and malcontents, plus a story of our Australian Anthropological history – right up to the beginnings of the process of tomorrow’s referenDUMB (sic) – I can recommend this book to you! I am currently enthralled!

Hooroo 4 now, Brian Hurlock


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