SHAPS in the Media (May 2020)

This month’s digest of SHAPS research in the media offers a rich selection across a range of topics and genres, from podcasts on Bronze Age pandemics, and on the relationship between logic and belief; online conversations about the ethics of conducting sustainable research, and about cinematic representations of Stalinism; radio interviews on new books in Australian political history; and through to a podcast exploring the comic side of Minoan civilization.

Professor Louise Hitchcock (Classics & Archaeology) was featured on the “The Study of Antiquity and the Middle Ages” Youtube channel. Her segments on Plague and the Bronze Age Collapse and Peasant Revolt and the Bronze Age Collapse have attracted (as at 10 June) over 20 000 viewers.

Dr Brent Davis (Classics & Archaeology) took part in a very different type of public engagement: the new podcast series, There Will Be A Test, in which comedians engage academics in conversation about their work. Brent talks here about his work on the Minoans (from around 12:48 in the clip below).

Professor Greg Restall (Philosophy) also stepped up to be interviewed this month, by a Philosophy postgraduate student, on the podcast Aleks Listens, in a wide-ranging conversation on logic, society, belief and the self.

Professor Sean Scalmer (History) was interviewed on ABC Radio National’s Late Night Live about his new book, Democratic Adventurer: Graham Berry and the Making of Australian Politics, which was launched on 25 May by Professor Frank Bongiorno (ANU).

Professor Mark Edele (History) took part in a discussion on the film The Death of Stalin, as part of the Australian Centre for Public History’s ‘Historians at the Movies Australia’ program. (Mark also published an article on the film, back in 2018).

Professor Andy May (History) published a blog post for Melbourne History Workshop responding to the announcement of the findings of a recent archaeological dig at the corner of King and Little Lonsdale Streets in Melbourne. The dig uncovered artefacts linked to Mrs Bruford’s School for Young Ladies, established in the 1840s. Andy’s blog post looks into the history of the school.

Dr Angel Alcalde (History) co-authored an article in Pursuit de-bunking the idea that COVID-19 marks the beginning of de-globalisation.

Dr Carla Pascoe-Leahy (History) took part in the Australian Centre for Public History’s Public History Hour, as part of the launch of the Working Paper on Sustainable History: The Responsibilities of Academic Historian in a Climate-Impacted World, of which she is a co-author.

Dr Liam Byrne (PhD in History, 2017; Honorary Fellow in History) recently published his first book, Becoming John Curtin and James Scullin: The Making of the Modern Labor Party. The book was discussed in an article by Professor Frank Bongiorno on historical perspectives on leadership in times of crisis. It was also reviewed by Norman Abjorensen, who described it as “remarkable … an extraordinarily engaging book by a rising young historian”.

In 2019 Liam was also appointed Historian for the Australian Council of Trade Unions, in which capacity he has been producing ‘Quick Histories’, such as this clip on the history of May Day.

Dr Sue Silberberg (PhD in History, 2017) discussed her new book, A Networked Community: Jewish Melbourne in the Nineteenth Century on ABC Radio-Melbourne’s Mornings with Virginia Trioli.

Sue was also interviewed for The Shtick:

Dr Max Kaiser (PhD in History, 2019) hosted an episode of New Books in Jewish Studies, in which he interviewed Brendan McGeever, author of a new book, Antisemitism and the Russian Revolution. 

A book by another of our graduates, Dr Caroline Jane Tully (PhD in Classics and Archaeology, 2016), The Cultic Life of Trees in the Prehistoric Aegean, Levant, Egypt and Cyprus (2018) was reviewed for Bryn Mawr Classical Review.

Finally, we leave you with this sign-off video, produced by Dr Gerhard Wiesenfeldt (History and Philosophy of Science), marking the end of an extraordinary semester of teaching online. Gerhard’s video exemplifies the creativity and commitment with which our staff and students have met the challenges that this semester has brought.

Feature image: Bronze age ‘Flotilla’ fresco from room 5, in the west house at the Minoan town of Akrotiri, Santorini, Greece, c. seventeenth century BCE via Wikimedia Commons