The decades immediately preceding and following Federation were the formative years of Australian politics. This biography tells the story of that period of transition through the life of one of its central protagonists. Sir Joseph Carruthers had a distinguished and eventful career as Premier, a Father of Federation and a Member of the New South Wales Parliament for forty-five years. His greatest legacy is the adaptation of nineteenth-century classical liberalism to the politics of Australia’s nascent party system. It is in large part because of Carruthers, and his great friend George Reid, that liberalism in Australia came to be associated with the centre-right.
“Here, finally, is the proud history of Australian liberalism told with clarity and panache. Zachary Gorman’s biography of Joseph Carruthers is a story about liberal values and old-fashioned retail politics, drawing up clear ‘lines of cleavage’ to give voters a real choice at elections. He paved the way for Liberal titans, Sir Robert Menzies and John Howard. History buffs will rejoice at the telling of Carruthers’ story, students will learn about the founding of Australian democracy, and politicians, present and future, would do well to remember our past in order to secure our future as a thriving democracy founded on classical liberal values.”
-- Janet Albrechtsen - opinion columnist with The Australian