Australia is the last continent to be settled by Europeans, but it also sustains a people and a culture tens of thousands of years old. For much of the past 200 years the newcomers have sought to replace the old with the new. This book tells how they imposed themselves on the land, and describes how they brought technology, institutions and ideas to make it their own. It relates the advance from penal colony to a prosperous free nation and illustrates how, in a nation created by waves of newcomers, the search for binding traditions has long been frustrated by the feeling of rootlessness. Now, with the realisation that colonisation began with invasion, present-day Australians are - more than ever before - coming to terms with their past and recognising the need to redefine and reposition Australia in a changing world. This is the most up-to-date single-volume Australian history available.