A Family Romance: The Deakins at Home

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Melbourne University Press, 1996 - Biography & Autobiography - 182 pages
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A Family Romance is the story of the family of Alfred Deakin, Australia's first Prime Minister. In this intriguing book, John Rickard explores the complex web of relationships between Alfred, his wife Pattie, and his sister Catherine.
The Deakin 'family romance' is permeated by the influence of spiritualism which, in extraordinary circumstances, brought Alfred and Pattie together, and which was to haunt their marriage.
It is a tale which, with its Gothic overtones, has the character of a novel, but which, in its telling, poses questions about the nature of biography. How can we bring to life the emotional world inhabited by such a family - or must that territory be conceded to the novelist?

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About the author (1996)

John Rickard is a professor of Australian studies at Monash University. He is the author of H. B. Higgins: The Rebel as Judge and Australia: A Cultural History.

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