New books document history and politics of East Timor 

Author and editor Dr Steven Farram has published two new books

Two new books exploring some key events in the history of the political relationships forged between South-east Asia and northern Australia will be launched at Charles Darwin University tomorrow, 3 December.

Author and editor, Dr Steven Farram will host the combined launch for his two recent CDU Press titles, A Short-lived Enthusiasm: The Australian Consulate in Portuguese Timor, and Locating Democracy: Representation, Elections and Governance in Timor-Leste.

A Short-lived Enthusiasm: The Australian Consulate in Portuguese Timor is illustrated with rare photographs, and looks at why Australia established the Dili consulate in 1946.

“It details the appointment of Charles Eaton as Australia’s first consul to Portuguese Timor to develop trade and defence arrangements with the Portuguese,” Dr Farram said. “By the time Eaton was replaced in October 1947, this enthusiasm began to wane and continued until the consulate’s closure in 1971.”

Locating Democracy: Representation, Elections and Governance, contains a selection of papers presented at a symposium, held in Dili on 26 to 27 April 2010.

“At this time, four districts were being prepared for the first municipal elections,” Dr Farram said. “The symposium was organised in response to the local government and decentralisation reform policies of the Timor-Leste government.

“With elections now postponed until at least 2014, part of the reform program will be to establish municipal assemblies, with the aim of making democracy more representative.”

Acclaimed author and journalist Jill Jolliffe will officially launch the books on Friday, 3 December at 5pm in the foyer of the Mal Nairn Auditorium on CDU’s Casuarina campus.

Steven Farram received his doctorate in history from CDU in 2004. He has published widely on the history and politics of East Timor, Indonesia and the Northern Territory. He works at CDU as a research associate.