New Guinea The Last Unknown|
This beautifully reproduced, critically acclaimed book, originally
published in 1963, was the first to tell the story of New Guinea as a whole: from Papua
to West Irian, from the earliest recorded impressions of European voyages to the patrols
of the early 1960s.
Other books dealt separately with the British, Australian, German and Dutch experiences
in New Guinea; The Last Unknown set them all in perspective, giving a blanced and lively
account of the peoples, policies and exploits that made the island what it is today.
The story is largely one of exploration: of deep and sometimes disastrous thrusts into
a fiercely beautiful land of tropical rivers and high snowcaps, of rainforests vibrant with
brightly coloured birds, and of high plateaus chequered with farmlands; of encounters
with a varied and unpredictable native population, many of whom were headhunters. It
too more than eighty years and the efforts of many remarkable men to open this strange
land to the eyes of the world.
Writing with discipline, judgement, and a rare sense of character and scene, Gavin
Souter brings this complex of activity into clear and revealing focus. His pages abound
with living pictures of adventurers, administrators, prospectors, patrol officers and
missionaries. He presents in sharp outline the political background against which these
people played their parts, and offers shrewd appraisals of the Australian and Dutch
Handsomely illustrated and with a detailed introduction by Chris Ballard to bring the
book, and the work of Gavin Souter, into its modern context – The Last Unknown is an
absorbing story and an invaluable contribution to Pacific history.
58 black-and-white photographs; maps
Portrait; hardcover; xvi + 312 pages
234 x 153 mm