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Bill Gammage Bill Gammage i(A35883 works by) (a.k.a. Willian Leonard Gammage; W. L. Gammage)
Born: Established: 1942 ;
Gender: Male
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Most Referenced Works


  • Bill Gammage's non-fiction work on the Aboriginal system of land management, The Biggest Estate on Earth: How Aborigines Made Australia, was published in 2011 and won the History Award in the 2012 Prime Minister's Literary Awards, the 2012 Queensland Literary Awards, History Book Award, the ACT Book of the Year Award, and was joint winner of the Canberra Critics Circle Awards for Writing. The work was also shortlisted for the 2012 Victorian Premier's Award, Nettie Palmer Prize for Nonfiction.

Personal Awards

2005 Order of Australia Member of the Order of Australia (AM) For service to education and to the community in the area of Australian history through teaching, writing and historical research.

Awards for Works

y separately published work icon The Biggest Estate on Earth : How Aborigines Made Australia Sydney : Allen and Unwin , 2011 Z1917220 2011 single work non-fiction 'Across Australia, early Europeans commented again and again that the land looked like a park. With extensive grassy patches and pathways, open woodlands and abundant wildlife, it evoked a country estate in England. Bill Gammage has discovered this was because Aboriginal people managed the land in a far more systematic and scientific fashion than we have ever realised.

For over a decade, Gammage has examined written and visual records of the Australian landscape. He has uncovered an extraordinarily complex system of land management using fire and the life cycles of native plants to ensure plentiful wildlife and plant foods throughout the year. We know Aboriginal people spent far less time and effort than Europeans in securing food and shelter, and now we know how they did it.

With details of land-management strategies from around Australia, The Biggest Estate on Earth rewrites the history of this continent, with huge implications for us today. Once Aboriginal people were no longer able to tend their country, it became overgrown and vulnerable to the hugely damaging bushfires we now experience. And what we think of as virgin bush in a national park is nothing of the kind.' (Source:
2013 shortlisted New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards Douglas Stewart Prize for Non-Fiction
2012 winner Queensland Literary Awards History Book Award
2012 winner Victorian Premier's Literary Awards Non-Fiction
2012 shortlisted Australian Book Industry Awards (ABIA) Australian General Non-Fiction Book of the Year
2012 winner Australian Capital Territory Book of the Year Award
2012 winner Victorian Premier's Literary Awards Victorian Prize for Literature
2012 winner The Prime Minister's Prize for Australian History
2011 winner Manning Clark House National Cultural Awards Individual Category
Last amended 10 Dec 2012 12:23:43
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