Sails of Doom

  • Geoffrey Blainey


For more than thirty thousand years the aboriginals had been nomads. They maintained the tradition of wandering long after most people of the world had settled down to the sedentary life of garden, farm, village or town. Why they did not adopt the custom of cultivating plants and keeping herds is a puzzle. New Guinea had gardens and pigs, and several islands in Torres Strait grew vegetables in neat gardens, but the new way of life did not apparently penetrate Australia. The small groups of nomads were thus intensely vulnerable when, unscathed by the neolithic revolution, they were confronted less than two centuries ago by Europe’s industrial revolution.


Sweet Potato Torres Strait Island Australian Coast Indonesian Archipelago Tamarind Tree 


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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1975

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  • Geoffrey Blainey

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