This book is about the mythologies of land exploration, and about space and the colonial enterprise in particular. It is an innovative investigation of the presumptions, aesthetics and politics of Australian explorers' texts that shows that they are not the simple, unadorned observations their authors would have us believe. The book argues that contact with Aborigines are occasions of discursive contest. It scrutinizes and undermines the scientific and literary methodology of exploration. It will be a crucial text for readers in cultural, postcolonial and Australian studies.