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The 1950s' undeniable prosperity has become synonymous with conservatism, and inertia seen as its hallmark. This book offers a fresh and challenging interpretation of the 1950s in Australia. Nicholas Brown presents the decade as a time of great change, brought about by affluence. Society became increasingly complex, mass consumption reached new heights and Australia's role in the world and the region was re-cast. The book looks at the ways in which those overseeing society responded to these post-war changes; in short, how they governed prosperity. A history of ideas as well as cultural, intellectual and institutional history, Governing Prosperity is a major reassessment of the 1950s. It will be particularly important for its analysis of the significance of the decade in the development of Australian society.