Incorrigible Optimist

A Political Memoir

Gareth Evans
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Incorrigible Optimist

Published

2 October 2017

ISBN

9780522866452

Ebook File Size

9.6MB

Imprint

Melbourne University Press

Incorrigible Optimist

A Political Memoir

Gareth Evans
A colourful and central figure in Australian politics for two decades—described by Bob Hawke as having 'the most acute mind' of any of his ministers—Gareth Evans has also been applauded worldwide for his contributions, both as Foreign Minister and in later international roles, to conflict resolution, genocide prevention and curbing weapons of mass destruction.

In this sometimes moving, often entertaining, and always lucid memoir Evans looks back over the highs and lows of his public life as a student activist, civil libertarian, law reformer, industry minister, international policymaker, educator and politician. He explains why it is that, despite multiple disappointments, he continues to believe that a safer, saner and more decent world is achievable, and why, for all its frustrations, politics remains an indispensable profession not only for megalomaniacs but idealists.
A colourful and central figure in Australian politics for two decades—described by Bob Hawke as having 'the most acute mind' of any of his ministers—Gareth Evans has also been applauded worldwide for his contributions, both as Foreign Minister and in later international roles, to conflict resolution, genocide prevention and curbing weapons of mass destruction.

In this sometimes moving, often entertaining, and always lucid memoir Evans looks back over the highs and lows of his public life as a student activist, civil libertarian, law reformer, industry minister, international policymaker, educator and politician. He explains why it is that, despite multiple disappointments, he continues to believe that a safer, saner and more decent world is achievable, and why, for all its frustrations, politics remains an indispensable profession not only for megalomaniacs but idealists.

Gareth Evans's career serves as an inspiration on how a spirit of optimism coupled with a keen insight for the art of the possible can create real positive change ... The man that emerges is truly one of Australia's leading figures and one of the world's great internationalists.”
—KOFI ANNAN, 7TH UNITED NATIONS SECRETARY GENERAL

Like its author, this book—a must read for anyone interested in Australian and international politics—is lively, at times "in your face", with no holds barred.”
—BOB HAWKE, 23RD PRIME MINISTER OF AUSTRALIA

compelling new political memoir, destined to become a standout... Evans is in a different league. His memoir brims with intellectual clarity and substance infused with national and international experience in policymaking.”
—TROY BRAMSTON, THE AUSTRALIAN

One of the funniest political memoirs I’ve read—full of laugh out loud stories”
—Jon Faine, ABC Conversation Hour

the intelligence, acuity and considerable common sense of Evans’s analysis shines through ... If you read nothing else this year on matters like race, reconciliation, cooperation, weapons control, R2P, distributed leadership and how to do politics, read this.”
—JAMES WALTER, AUSTRALIAN BOOK REVIEW

a rollicking good read; a big life of outright fun by a man who leaned in”
—GERALDINE DOOGUE, ABC RADIO NATIONAL PRESENTER

In this political memoir, Evans covers a wide range of policy issues, from education and industry to war and nuclear disarmament. In a style that is nimble, witty, thorough and precise, Evans takes the reader through the business of high-level policy-making – ★★★★”
—Books + Publishing

Evans cares passionately about peace, justice and human security, and is driven by a restless energy that is astonishingly creative when harnessed to a pet cause … an exceptionally compelling political memoir that connects the private to the profession, the national to the global, and public policy to foreign policy. ”
—Ramesh Thakur, Australian Outlook/Asia & the Pacific Policy Society

Gareth Evans

Gareth Evans

Gareth Evans, now Chancellor of the Australian National University, was a member of the Australian Parliament for 21 years, and a cabinet minister throughout the Hawke–Keating era. From 1988 to 1996 he served as Foreign Minister. He led the Brussels-based International Crisis Group from 2000 to 2009 and has won many prizes and awards for his contributions to international policymaking. He has written or edited, solely or jointly, twelve other books, including Australia’s Constitution:

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