Mungo MacCallum

The Whitlam Mob

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We were a motley mob, we sans-culottes of Canberra …

In this vastly entertaining book, Mungo MacCallum captures the spirit of a nation-changing time. He portrays the Whitlam government’s key figures — from Gough and Margaret to Lionel Murphy, Bill Hayden and Jim Cairns — as well as “the other mob” in opposition — Billy McMahon, John Gorton, Malcolm Fraser and many more.

The Whitlam Mob addresses some crucial questions: What was the night of the long prawns? Who was the playboy of the parliament? And who was “the toe-cutter”?

This is Mungo at his best: vivid and barbed, nostalgic but always clear-eyed.

The Whitlam Mob, with its entertaining and informative vignettes forming a unique picture of Australian politics at the time, is a book worth reading more than once regardless of age, gender or political persuasion.’ —ArtsHub

‘Mungo MacCallum scrapes over the coals of Australian political history… It’s a book one will treasure for quick reference.’ —Adelaide Advertiser

‘An amused, highly informed portrait of the Whitlam era with a larrikin edge, all underpinned with a Wordsworthian sense of wonder at having experienced tumultuous times and walked with giants.’ —the Age

‘The book is highly recommended for those suffering MacCallum column withdrawal symptoms’ —Byron Shire Echo

‘There’s no doubt the ‘wild and colourful’ Whitlam mob is more fun to write about than the present dreary lot.’ —the Australian

Mungo MacCallum is the author of The Good, the Bad and the Unlikely: Australia's Prime Ministers. He has long been one of Australia’s most influential and entertaining political journalists, in a career spanning more than four decades.
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198 printed pages
Original publication
2014

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