The Coral Battleground
1 May 2014
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Environment & Ecology: General Interest
It will come as a surprise to most people that so many of the issues confronted in the 1960s by the doughty campaigners against drilling for oil on the barrier reef are still alive. We will have to be... View more
Judith Wright is considered to be one of Australia's greatest poets; she was also an ardent conservationist and activist. Over a long and distinguished literary career, she published poetry, children's books, literary essays, biographies, histories and other works of non-fiction. Her commitment to the Great Barrier Reef began in 1962, when she helped found the Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland. She went on to become a member of the Committee of Enquiry into the National Estate and life member of the Australian Conservation Foundation. Judith Wright worked tirelessly to promote land rights for Aboriginal people and to alert non-Aboriginal Australians about the awful legacy Europeans have left upon Aborigines and the land. She has written The Cry for the Dead (1981), We Call for a Treaty (1985) and Born of the Conquerors (1991). She died in 2001. Judith Wright was awarded many honours for her writing, including the Grace Leven Award (twice), the New South Wales Premier's Prize, the Encyclopedia Britannica Prize for Literature, and the ASAN World Prize for Poetry. She received honorary degrees (D.Litt.) from the Universities of New England, Sydney Monash, Melbourne, Griffith and New South Wales and the Australian National University. In 1994 she received the Human Rights Commission Award for Collected Poems.