The Idea of Home



In The Idea of Home John Hughes writes about growing up in the Hunter Valley coal-mining town of Cessnock, in a household dominated by memories of the Ukraine, which his mother and grandparents were forced to flee during the Second World War.

Hughes charts the effect their stories and routines had on him as a child, the way they shaped his imagination, and determined his idea of himself, as a student in Newcastle, and later as the holder of a prestigious scholarship at Cambridge University. Yet this inheritance almost undoes him, for in Cambridge what he encounters is not the romantic idea of Europe he had imagined, but a provincialism more pronounced than that he had left behind in Australia.


Print ISBN : 1-920882-04-9
pp : 207pp
Categories: ,
November 2004

John Hughes was born in Cessnock, in the Hunter Valley of NSW, and educated at Cessnock High School, the Universities of Newcastle and Cambridge, and the University of Technology, Sydney, where he completed his PhD. He currently teaches English at Sydney Grammar School.


Sydney Morning HeraldĀ 


Winner 2005 NSW Premier’s Literary Award for Non-Fiction