Category: History

  1. The Reckoning of Gillard’s Misogyny Speech

    A historical reckoning with Gillard’s misogyny speech forces us to acknowledge there are no heroes – and that’s okay. SHAPS Hansen Lecturer in US History, Julia Bowes, explores in this article, republished from Pursuit. This week marks 10 years since former Prime Minister Julia Gillard delivered her famous misogyny speech. Now synonymous with her legacy, […]

  2. Cuckoldry in Early Modern England

    Early modern English culture displayed an obsession with women’s infidelity and anxieties around the shame this brought on their husbands. History major Joseph Moorhead explored this topic for the subject A History of Sexualities (HIST30004) in 2020, and was awarded the 2020 Laurie R Gardiner Prize for the best undergraduate essay in early modern British […]

  3. Propaganda: Russia’s War on Ukraine, Part III

    A video-recording of the third instalment in this series, featuring Professor Natalia Chaban (University of Canterbury), Dr Julie Fedor (University of Melbourne), Dr Robert Horvath (La Trobe University), and Dr Volodymyr Kulyk (National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine), speaking on the theme of 'Propaganda' (27 May 2022).

  4. The SHAPS Hellenic Ball

    This winter, SHAPS undergraduate student societies came together to embark on an ambitious and rewarding undertaking. Abigail Banister-Jones, Co-Consul/President of MUCLASS (Melbourne University Classics & Archaeology Student Society), reports on the inaugural SHAPS Ball below. Where else does one throw a ball for classics, history and philosophy students but the Hellenic Museum? Surrounded by artefacts […]

  5. Remembering Stuart Macintyre

    A videorecording of the two-day symposium honouring and celebrating Stuart Macintyre (24–25 February 2022).

  6. Nat Cutter

    Nat Cutter (PhD in History, 2022), ‘Barbarian Civility: British Expatriates and the Transformation of the Maghreb in English Thought, 1660–1714′ This thesis explores the role of British expatriates living in Ottoman Algeria, Tunisia, and Tripolitania, in a transformation of British-Maghrebi diplomatic, economic, and cultural relations in the later Stuart era. This period, 1660–1714, represented a […]

  7. The Undoing of Roe v. Wade

    On 24 June 2022, the US Supreme Court effectively overturned the decision on Roe v. Wade from 1973, which had previously established a constitutional right to abortion in the United States. In this article, republished from Pursuit, Hansen Lecturer in US History, Julia Bowes explores how “the US Supreme Court decision may embolden conservative grassroots […]

  8. History: Russia’s War on Ukraine, Part II

    A video-recording of the second instalment in this series, featuring Associate Professor Olga Bertelsen (Tiffin University), Associate Professor Oxana Shevel (Tufts University) and Professor Serhy Yekelchyk (University of Victoria), speaking on the theme of 'History' (29 April 2022).

  9. Why Wait? Treaty and the Federal Election

    First Nations Peoples shouldn’t have to wait for non-Indigenous Australians and the Government to catch up when it comes to committing to Treaty. Julia Hurst from SHAPS and Sarah Middleton (SSPS) discuss in this recent article, republished from Pursuit. As Australia’s federal election approaches, we have seen some early jostling around the politics of entrenching […]

  10. Christianity, Colonisation and the Challenge of Māori History

    A video-recording of the 2021 Ernest Scott Lecture, Part II, delivered by Dr Hirini Kaa (October 2021).

  11. Anton Donohoe-Marques

    Anton Donohoe-Marques (PhD in History, 2022), ‘Revisiting Anzac in the Wake of World War Two: Memory and Identity in the Post-War Period, 1945–1960’ This thesis explores how war remembrance – in the form of commemorative observance and the building of memorials – developed in Australia in the period that followed World War Two, from 1945 […]

  12. Nathan Gardner

    Nathan Gardner (PhD in History, 2022), ‘Imagining the “Chinese Australian Community”: A History of Community Organisations, 1970–2020’ This study examines the concept of a unitary ‘Chinese Australian community’ through a comparative analysis of Chinese Australian community organisations and their responses to six major events or moments in recent history (1970–2020). These events and moments are: […]

  13. Matthew Holmes

    Matthew Holmes (PhD in History, 2022) ‘Growing Songs: Australian Sound Media for Children from Parlour Music to Podcasts’ This thesis provides the first cultural history of sound media produced for Australian children. It opens by exploring post-Federation parlour sheet music and the burgeoning mechanised media of radio and phonographs, with a concentration on the rising […]

  14. Hidden Women of History: ‘The Buzzwinker’ Ellen Miles, Child Convict, Goldfields Pickpocket and Vagrant

    As part of a series in the Conversation, looking at under-acknowledged women through the ages, Janet McCalman examines the life of Ellen Miles, a child convict born in 1820s England, told through some of her court appearances throughout her life.

  15. Five Must-Read Books about Russia and Ukraine: Our Expert Picks

    Recently, five experts from universities across Australia – SHAPS’s Mark Edele and Julie Fedor, together with Judith Armstrong (School of Languages & Linguistics, UniMelb), Marko Pavlyshyn (Monash) and Stephen Fortescue (UNSW) – were invited to recommend a selection of books best illuminating Russia’s war in Ukraine. This article has been republished from The Conversation. 1. Ukraine: […]

  16. Inches Apart: Railways & Federation

    History major Patrick Gigacz explores the history of the state borders in Australia through the prism of the 1921 Royal Commission over railway gauges in this prize-winning essay produced for the subject Controversies in Australian History (HIST30064) in 2021. The pandemic has reminded many Australians that they live in a federation of states. Passionate public […]

  17. Stuart Macintyre’s History of the Communist Party of Australia

    “The crimson thread of communism runs through the work of the great, lamented Australian historian, Stuart Macintyre“, late Emeritus Professor in SHAPS. His colleague Professor Sean Scalmer reviews Stuart Macintyre’s last book, The Party: The Communist Party of Australia from Heyday to Reckoning (Allen & Unwin, 2022), in this recent article, republished from The Conversation. […]

  18. Solidarity with Ukraine

    On 3–5 February 2022, scholars from sixteen countries around the world – 179 participants in all – gathered online for a Ukrainian Studies conference marking the 30th anniversary of Ukrainian independence. Since 24 February, we have followed with grief and horror the unfolding catastrophe in Ukraine after the Russian Federation’s unprovoked and illegal invasion. The […]

  19. ‘National Security’ and Australian Identity

    Dr Mia Martin Hobbs examines the history of the phrase 'national security' and its use in Australian public life.

  20. Freg J Stokes

    Freg James Stokes (PhD in History, 2022). ‘The Hummingbird’s Atlas: Mapping Guaraní Resistance in the Atlantic Rainforest during the Emergence of Capitalism (1500–1768)’.   This thesis maps the resistance of Guaraní peoples to colonisation in the Atlantic Rainforest of South America during the emergence of capitalism, from 1500 to 1768. As such, it addresses a […]

  21. Elizabeth Tunstall

    Elizabeth Tunstall (PhD in History, 2022) ‘The Elizabethan Succession Question and Competing Understandings of Monarchy, 1558–1603‘ Queen Elizabeth I ruled England for almost 45 years (1558–1603) and, throughout her reign, the succession was a prominent source of debate and anxiety. This thesis surveys the Elizabethan succession question for the entirety of her reign, instead of […]

  22. Witchcraft in Early Modern Europe

    Dr Charlotte-Rose Millar is a cultural historian specialising in supernatural belief and popular print in early modern England. In 2021 she co-ordinated the second-year History subject Witch-hunting in European Societies (HIST20080). Recent graduate Jen McFarland sat down with Charlotte to talk about her research. What first drew you to witchcraft as an area of research? […]

  23. Sam Watts

    Sam Watts (PhD in History, 2022) ‘No Masters But Ourselves: Black Reconstruction in the Deep South City’ The destruction of slavery brought about dramatic opportunities and challenges for formerly enslaved Black Southerners, many of whom migrated to Southern cities in search of safety and freedom following the Civil War. During Reconstruction, the Deep South city […]

  24. J. Yan

    J. H. Yan (PhD in History, 2022) ‘Contentious Routes: Ireland Questions, Radical Political Articulations and Settler Ambivalence in (White) Australia, c1909–23′ This thesis is a transnational history of the ‘Ireland Question’ in the imperial and ethico-political imaginary of radical and labour movements in (‘White’) Australia during the ‘Irish revolutionary period’, broadly conceived. It traces the […]

  25. Richard Young

    Richard Young (PhD in History, 2022) ‘Dragging History Through the Gutters: War Comic Books, Civic Duty & American Popular Memory, 1952–1993′ The Cold War era (1945–1991) coincided with both the emergence and height of war comic books in the United States. Despite significant social, political, and comic industry shifts during this period, war comics remained […]

  26. Mynas Matter: Towards a Cultural History of ‘Invasive’ Species in Australia

    History PhD candidate Simon Farley is investigating settler Australian attitudes towards non-native wildlife from the 1820s to the present. In this article, they reflect on the historical entanglement of ‘invasive’ species with the politics of immigration and indigeneity. How is a myna like Pauline Hanson? No, it’s not a riddle. It is a question a […]

  27. Maternal Metamorphosis: How Mothering Has Changed in Australia Since the Second World War

    How has motherhood and mothering changed in Australia over the last 75 years? Interviews with more than 60 Australian women in a recent research project demonstrate their distinctive experiences over three broad generational eras, ranging from the postwar period to the era of second-wave feminism in the 1970s and 1980s to the parenting of the […]

  28. Performances on the World Stage

    A video-recording of the 2021 Greg Dening Memorial Lecture, delivered by Dr Jenny Bulstrode.

  29. The UniMelb History Society in 2021

    The UniMelb History Society is a student-led club for people who are studying or interested in history. Headed by a committee of passionate history buffs, our aims include promoting the study of history; providing a social network for fellow history buffs on campus and beyond; and running history-themed events such as trivia nights, film screenings, […]

  30. Return to Vietnam: Mapping American and Australian Veterans’ Journeys

    Between 1981 and 2016, thousands of American and Australian veterans returned to Vietnam on journeys of reconciliation, healing and remembrance. Their stories became the focus of Mia Martin Hobbs’s PhD dissertation, a transnational, comparative oral history project tracing their return journeys. In this article, Mia discusses her research, investigating why these veterans returned and what […]

  31. Vale Stuart Macintyre (1947–2021): A History Warrior Who Worked for a Better Australia

    A tribute by Janet McCalman (republished from The Conversation).

  32. Student History Journal Chariot in 2021

    Chariot is an undergraduate history journal created by and for students. Founded in 2018, the journal provides a space for students to engage with history in their own way, publishing online and in print. In this blogpost, Chariot editors Daisy Norfolk and Lauren Song report on their activities over the past year. 2021 has been […]

  33. Against Erasure

    Using witness accounts and smuggled information, researchers and technicians from the University of Melbourne have created a 3D digital model of the infamous but dismantled Manus Island Detention Centre. In this article, republished from Pursuit, SHAPS’s Una McIlvenna, together with Claire Loughnan (SSPS) and the eTeaching Unit’s Mitch Buzza, Meredith Hinze and Sam Taylor, tell […]

  34. An Interview with Hansen Associate Professor Jenny Spinks

    Jenny Spinks is a historian of the early modern world, with a particular interest in visual and material culture as historical sources for research and for teaching. To celebrate her recent promotion to Associate Professor, we feature Jenny’s work here in this interview with recent graduate Jen McFarland. You can watch the video and/or read […]

  35. Celebrating Our Students’ Achievements

    Looking back on last year’s note of congratulations to our student award recipients, I noted then the extraordinary (pandemic-driven) conditions during which the students were working. This year the point is doubly true and needs to be acknowledged explicitly. Most of the work that is being awarded by these prizes was done remotely, often independently, […]

  36. Trent Duan

    Trent Duan, ‘A Quarrel with the German People? The Totalising Logic of Enmity, Narratives of Enmity and the “German Question” on the Australian Home Front during the Second World War’ (PhD in History, 2021) A significant aspect of wartime discourse is the construction, definition and redefinition of in-group and out-group identities which justify, rationalise and […]

  37. Stephen Jakubowicz

    Stephen Jakubowicz (MA in History, 2021), ‘The Mischief Wrought by the Master of the Skerryvore: Victoria at the Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition of 1876′ This thesis is a study of the colony of Victoria’s involvement in the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition. The chance to send a display to Philadelphia provided an exciting opportunity for the colony […]

  38. Themistocles Kritikakos

    Themistocles Kritikakos (PhD in History, 2021) ‘Memory and Cooperation: Genocide Recognition Efforts among Armenians, Greeks and Assyrians in Twenty-first Century Australia’ This thesis examines a unique period in the early twenty-first century when Greeks, Assyrians and Armenians in Australia cooperated to achieve genocide recognition. The Armenian genocide during the First World War (1915) has been […]

  39. Country, Culture and Conflict on Australia’s Early Colonial Frontiers

    A video recording of Professor Grace Karskens' 2021 Ernest Scott Lecture Part I (September 2021).

  40. Jen McFarland

    Jen McFarland, ‘“Qual’è utile alla Città”: Pizzochere Networks, Social ‘Usefulness’, and Female Precarity in Early Modern Venice” (MA in History, 2021) This thesis provides the first dedicated study of the identity, social status, and social roles of pizzochere, or lay religious women, in early modern Venice. Pizzochere professed simple religious vows, usually to a mendicant […]

  41. Jessie Matheson

    Jessie Matheson (PhD in History, 2021), ‘Countryminded Conforming Femininity: A Cultural History of Rural Womanhood in Australia, 1920–1997′ This thesis explores the cultural and political history of Australian rural women between 1920 and 1997. Using a diverse range of archival collections this research finds that for rural women cultural constructions of idealised rural womanhood had […]

  42. Joseph Parro

    Joseph Parro (MA in History, 2021) ‘P.R. Stephensen and Transnational Fascism: From Interwar Adoption to Postwar Survival and Transmission’ This thesis examines Percy Reginald ‘Inky’ Stephensen (1901–1965), Australian author, publisher, authors’ agent, and political activist, in relation to the transnational fascist phenomena of the twentieth century. It challenges previous characterisations of Stephensen as an Australian […]

  43. Greg Dening (1931–2008)

    On the occasion of the forthcoming Greg Dening lecture, we thought it timely to republish an obituary for Greg Dening by his former colleague, Emeritus Professor Chips Sowerwine. This obituary first appeared in the Journal of Australasian Irish Studies 7 (2007) and has been reprinted by permission of the journal’s editor.  Greg Dening died on 13 […]

  44. Susan Reidy

    Susan Reidy (PhD in History, 2021) ‘Glorious Gardens and Exuberant Grounds: The History of Urban Public Parks in Australia’ From the colonial period until the present day, Australia’s urban public parks, botanic gardens, and its sports and recreation grounds have been places of special value, considerable cultural and environmental significance and complex social use. In […]

  45. Donna Merwick Dening (1932–2021)

    On 23 August SHAPS received the sad news that Donna Merwick Dening had passed away overnight. Donna was an Associate Professor in the History Department from 1969 to 1995 and taught American History. She was teacher, mentor and colleague to many and we mourn the passing of a great historian. Donna was proud of the […]

  46. The 2021 International Summer School in Transnational History, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

    Since 2018, the Universitas Gadjah Mada has hosted an annual International Summer School in Transnational History, bringing together students from across Southeast Asia to live and study together in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. In 2018 and 2019 SHAPS was able to send small groups of students, together with Associate Professor Katharine McGregor, to participate in person in […]

  47. The Symbolism of Australia’s Southern Cross

    Australia’s Southern Cross has been used on flags and coats of arms since the early colonial period but, despite its endurance, it’s a very difficult emblem for many Australians. Dr Martin Bush, Research Fellow in SHAPS, researches the cultural history of astronomy in colonial- and Federation-era Australia. He tells us more in this article, republished […]

  48. An Interview with Associate Professor Catherine Kovesi

    Catherine Kovesi researches discourses surrounding luxury and consumption in early modern Italy; Florentine and Venetian family history; and Australian religious history. She is Chair of the Australasian Centre for Italian Studies and in recent years has worked with the Australian Council for the Arts at the Venice Biennale Arte. To celebrate Catherine’s promotion to Associate […]

  49. Discovering the ‘Mess and Stink’ of Romeo Lane

    A video recording of Professor Janet McCalman's presentation to the SHAPS Fellows & Associates Seminar (July 2021).

  50. Welcome Dr Julia Bowes, New Hansen Lecturer in US History

    Dr Julia Bowes joined SHAPS as Hansen Lecturer in US History on 1 July 2021 and will be teaching HIST20071 American History: 1945 to Now in Semester 2/2021. Originally from Sydney, Julia completed her PhD at Rutgers University in 2018 and her doctoral thesis, Invading the Home: Children, State Power, and the Gendered Origins of Modern Conservatism, […]

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