For thousands of young Australians the tearful dockside farewell was a rite of passage as they boarded ships bound for London. For some the journey was an extended holiday, but for many actors, painters, musicians, writers and journalists, leaving Australia seemed to be the only path to personal and professional fulfilment. This book is a collective biography of those people who found themselves categorised as expatriates - people such as Leo McKern, Dame Joan Sutherland, Barry Tuckwell, Don Banks, Phillip Knightley, John Pilger, Peter Porter, Richard Neville, Jill Neville and 'megastars' Barry Humphries, Germaine Greer and Clive James. The book tells of choices they made about career and country, yet it is also a cultural history that traces shifts in the complex relationship between Australia and Britain, as the supposed colonial backwater began to develop its own cultural identity.
' ... a delightful revelation of English attitudes to Australians and vice-versa.' The Examiner ' ... a valuable book ... Thoroughly researched, earnestly argued, it combs over the experience of exile and displacement.' The Weekend Australian '... makes a valuable contribution in exploring and contextualising expatriatism'. Australian Book Review