> Skip to content
  • Published: 4 November 2015
  • ISBN: 9780670079209
  • Imprint: Viking Australia
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $48.00

The Dismissal

A Groundbreaking New History




Drawing on a range of new sources, some of which have never before been made public – including hundreds of pages from Kerr's archives – this remarkable account is dispassionate in its analysis, vivid in its narrative and brutal in its conclusions. 

There is no more dramatic event in our political history than the dismissal.  This book is the definitive story, filled with fresh documents, revelations and new interviews that change our understanding of this event.  It is also a brilliant forensic analysis of the ruthless, proud and stubborn main players – Malcolm Fraser, Gough Whitlam and Sir John Kerr.  As keys to our understanding, Kelly and Bramston examine four central aspects of the dismissal: the real attitude of Buckingham Palace towards Kerr; whether Kerr tipped Fraser off about his plan; Kerr's deception of Whitlam; and Kerr's dealings with former High Court judges Sir Garfield Barwick and Sir Anthony Mason.  In the gripping story that follows, the ambitions and flaws of Whitlam, Fraser and Kerr are laid bare as never before.   Drawing on a range of new sources, some of which have never before been made public – including hundreds of pages from Kerr's archives – this remarkable account is dispassionate in its analysis, vivid in its narrative and brutal in its conclusions.  It exposes the true motivations, the extent of the deceit and the scale of the collusion.   'It was a premeditated and an elaborate deception.'  Paul Keating 

  • Published: 4 November 2015
  • ISBN: 9780670079209
  • Imprint: Viking Australia
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $48.00

About the authors

Paul Kelly

Paul Kelly is The Australian newspaper’s Editor at Large. He is the author of nine books on Australian politics and history including the influential The End of Certainty: Power, Politics and Business in Australia (1992) and Triumph & Demise: The Broken Promise of a Labor Generation (2014), his account of the Rudd–Gillard era. Present at Parliament House in Canberra on the day of the Dismissal, Kelly has covered this controversy ever since and has written several books on the subject, most recently The Dismissal: In the Queen's name (2015) with Troy Bramston.

Troy Bramston

Troy Bramston has been a senior writer and columnist with The Australian newspaper, and a contributor to Sky News, since 2011. He was previously a columnist with The Sunday Telegraph.

Troy is the author or editor of nine books, including Paul Keating: the big-picture leader (2016), and, co-authored with Paul Kelly, The Dismissal: in the Queen’s Name (2015).

He was the co-winner of the Australian Book Industry Award for The Dismissal. His biography of Paul Keating was a finalist for the Walkley Award, shortlisted for the National Biography Award, and longlisted for the Australian Book Industry Award. He was awarded the Centenary Medal in 2001.

Troy has worked as a policy and political adviser, and speechwriter in government, opposition, and the private sector. He lives in Sydney with his wife, Nicky, and two children, Madison and Angus.

Praise for The Dismissal

A perfect guide to the dismissal for any newcomers and a joy of a read for any signed up tragics

Richard Ferguson, The Spectator (Australia)

The information — much of it new — contained in this up-to-date analysis of the dismissal of Gough Whitlam as prime minister is utterly fascinating. Paul Kelly and Troy Bramston have uncovered fresh documents and interviewed scores of participants in the events leading up to, during and after the momentous day of November 11, 1975 . . . Extremely illuminating

Ross Fitzgerald, Weekend Australian

A monumental effort of unrelenting, tenacious research by Paul and his colleague Troy Bramston . . . another stellar contribution to a better understanding of our nation's history

Malcolm Turnbull

Awards & recognition

Australian Book Industry Awards

Winner  •  2016  •  General Non-fiction Book of the Year (Readers' Choice)

Related titles