Automobiles and Australian modernisation: the redex around-Australia trials of the 1950s
AbstractIn the first half of the 1950s, automobiles came to the forefront of national attention in three Redex Around-Australia Reliability trials, which sent hundreds of cars from Sydney to race around the continent in expressions of barely-controlled automotive fervour. As multi-dimensional events that incapsulated individual and national aspirations, the Redex trials provide an evocative framework for exploring some competing versions of Australian modernisation in those post-war years. For all their affirmations of national maturity, however, the trials perpetuated colonial orientations to 'hostile' landscapes and continued to envisage Aboriginal people as inherently outside of the modern present.
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