This is writing of great passion and power, which introduces a fascinating man and a compelling Aboriginal writer.
Many of the pieces included in Up from the Mission have been hard to find until now. Gathered together in a cohesive, broad-ranging book, they show a key Australian thinker coming into being.
Noel Pearson evokes his early life in Hope Vale, Queensland. He includes sections of his epoch-making essay 'Our Right to Take Responsibility', which exposed the trap of passive welfare and proposed new ways forward.
There are pieces on the apology; on Barack Obama and black leadership; on Australian party politics - Keating, Howard and Rudd; and on alcoholism, despair and what can be done to mend Aboriginal communities that have fallen apart.