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Peer Reviewed Books

Disasters in Australia and New Zealand:
Historical Approaches to Understanding Catastrophe

Edited by Scott McKinnon and Margaret Cook
Chapter: “Shaken but Not Stirred”: The Aftermath of Urban Disasters
Disasters, as transformative environmental forces, challenge human perceptions
of identity, belonging and control. This chapter concentrates on the aftermath
of two specific urban disasters—the 1989 Newcastle earthquake and 2011
Brisbane flood—to explore how these events threatened human notions of place
and environmental security. The death and building destruction caused by the
earthquake undermined Newcastle’s residents’ sense of identity, the rarity of
the event confronted their feelings of security. Brisbane’s 2011 flood inundated
or destroyed buildings, shattering the myth of flood immunity. In Newcastle
intense debate erupted over the preservation of damaged buildings. In Brisbane
wrath was directed at presumed dam mismanagement. I argue that in both
cases what was at stake was a desire to reassert a sense of place and human
control over nature. But in doing so, both cities failed to adequately address the
human-induced dimensions of natural disasters, thereby undermining potential
for resilience and adaptation to environmental change.

A River with a City Problem: A History of Brisbane Floods.

A River with a City Problem is a compelling history of floods in the Brisbane River catchment, especially those in 1893, 1974 and 2011. Extensively researched, it highlights the force of nature, the vagaries of politics and the power of community. With many river cities facing urban development challenges, Cook makes a convincing argument for what must change to prevent further tragedy.


Non-Peer Reviewed Books

120 Years - Our Stories, Our Memories, Ipswich Girls' Grammar School, 1892-2012.

Co-edited with Helen Pullar and Joan Meecham, this book is a compilation of stories and memories of Ipswich Girls' Grammar School, over the 120 years of the School's history, written by past students and teachers.

Learning by Doing: A history of Ipswich Kindergarten 1937-2012.

This book captures the 75 year history of Ipswich Kindergarten, from its establishment by Olive Hancock to the present day. It includes many photographs and memories and highlights the educational contribution this community kindergarten has made to the young people of Ipswich since 1937.

From Inkwell to iPad: Celebrating 100 Years of Education at St Joseph's Primary School, North Ipswich 1913-2013.

Written to celebrate the centenary of St Joseph's, the book documents the school’s establishment and its proud history.

A Hard and Noble Life: A History of Nursing at the Ipswich Hospital 1860-2011.

A social history of the nursing at Ipswich Hospital, it recalls the training and working conditions for generations of nurses. The book is full of personal stories – many funny, some sad – designed to bring the human experience alive for the reader.

Unquestionably one of the Nicest Churches: St Paul's Anglican Church, Ipswich 1859-2009. St Paul's, Ipswich, 2008.

Written to celebrate the sesqui-centenary of one of Queensland's oldest churches.

Queenie's Diary: A Schoolgirl's Life 1914-1915.

Written with Helen Pullar, this book was born when the authors were given a diary written by a boarder at Ipswich Girls' Grammar School (IGGS) in 1914-15. The book provides a rich social history of IGGS, a family story and an insight into Ipswich at the time of World War I.

Play With Flowers and Smile: A Short History of the Ipswich Horticultural Society 1866-2004.

A history of the Ipswich Horticultural Society, co-authored by Ian Pullar, the book documents the history of this long-standing community group.

Shifting Sands: Memories of Moreton Island.

The inspiration behind this book was the collection of a number of oral histories conducted by the Moreton Island Protection Committee who was faced with the question of what to do with them. Margaret Cook (nee Pullar) organised the materially thematically and was able to produce an attractive readable book which wove the oral accounts into a contextualised history of Moreton Island.

Technically Speaking: A History of the Bremer Institute of TAFE.

The book depicts the progress of vocational education and training in the region over 100 years and describes the evolution of the Technical College in Ipswich to its expansion to other sites.

Watery Sauces: A People's History of the Water Resources Commission (Queensland) and its Predecessors 1881-1995.

Written with Ian Pullar, the book documents the administrative history and achievements of this long-serving government department and draws heavily on the oral histories collected from over 100 officers who worked for the Department throughout Queensland.

We Will Remember Them: A History of the Yeronga-Dutton Park Sub-Branch RSL and Yeronga Services Club. Brisbane: Yeronga Services Club, 1999.

A history of the Yeronga Services Club from its small beginnings as the Yeronga and Dutton Park subbranches through its history since 1948 as the Yeronga-Dutton Park sub-branch.

Rising From the Ashes: A Jubilee History of Ipswich Little Theatre 1946-1996. Ipswich: Ipswich Little Theatre Society Inc, 1996.

Ipswich Little Theatre is one of the oldest continuous amateur theatre groups in Queensland.This book documents the rich history of this active and proud community group.

The Town on the Brown: A History of Rolleston, Brisbane: Department of Natural Resources, 1999.

This book was written when the town of Rolleston in Central Queensland was threatened with inundation by a proposed dam.


Substantial Heritage Reports

Queensland Schools: A Heritage Conservation Study, 1996.

Commissioned by the Department of Education, co-authored by Margaret Cook, Paul Burmester and Michael Kennedy to assess the cultural heritage significance of the Education Department’s property portfolio. This study is still used as the benchmark from which the heritage significance of a school can be assessed.

Queensland Health Heritage Survey, 1996

Completed with Thom Blake and Michael Kennedy, this study was at the time the most comprehensive heritage assessment of health buildings in Queensland.

Prefabricated World War II Structures in Queensland for National Trust of Queensland, June 1997.

This report provides a contextual history for Queensland’s WWII structures and offers an assessment for their cultural heritage significance.

Great Artesian Basin: Historical Overview.

Co-authored with Thom Blake, this report was commissioned by the Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Water in 2006 and examines the impact of the Great Artesian Basin on the development of the pastoral industry, the railway, stock routes and towns throughout western Queensland.


Cultural Tourism

Top of Town, Ipswich Queensland, 2010

This self-guided heritage trail was produced (in conjunction with Andrew Spark) to promote the history of the area known as the Top of Town in Ipswich and to draw attention to the rich architecture in the city.

The Wagon Route from Springsure to the Barcoo.

Produced with John Rolfe in 2003 for the Springsure Progress and Tourism Association, this attractively illustrated booklet provides the story of the development of this important early road in central Queensland for tourists visiting the region.

Heritage Trails series

This attractive heritage trail series was published between 1999 and 2000 with Howard Pearce and Kay Cohen. The series includes Heritage Trails of the Queensland Outback, Heritage Trails of the Tropical North, Heritage Trails of the Great South East and North Queensland's Mining Heritage Trails.

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