Australian Journal of Biography and History: No. 1, 2018

Notes on contributors

Dr Malcolm Allbrook is managing editor of the Australian Dictionary of Biography (ADB) and a research fellow in the National Centre of Biography at The Australian National University (ANU). He has authored and co-authored four books: Never Stand Still (with Darraga Watson, 2013), Henry Prinsep’s Empire (2014), Carlotta’s Perth (with Mary Anne Jebb, 2017) and Barddabardda Wodjenangorddee: The Creation, History, and People of Dambeemangaddee Country (with Valda Blundell, et al., 2017).

Darryl Bennet was employed by the Australian Dictionary of Biography in the Research School of Social Sciences at ANU from 1989, being deputy general editor from 2001 until his retirement in 2008. He shepherded the project for the ADB to go online from about 2003 to 2007, and was awarded an ADB medal in May 2009 for his service to the ADB, which is ongoing. Darryl is currently a member of the ADB Editorial Board and an ADB research fellow.

Dr Ragbir Bhathal is an Australian astronomer and author, currently based at the Western Sydney University. He is known for his work on the Optical Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence. He was awarded the CJ Dennis Award for excellence in natural history writing and the Nancy Keesing Fellowship by the State Library of NSW. ANU Press will be publishing his current project, Mt Stromlo Astronomers: The Endless Frontier.

Elisabeth (Lis) Christensen had a career in primary education working in the public sector. She has a trained primary teacher’s certificate, BA from La Trobe University (history/sociology) and an MEdSt from Monash University (women in education). Research on Annie Hughston formed part of her master’s degree.

Brendan Dalton has a BA (Hons) from ANU and postgraduate qualifications in technology and management from the University of New England. He is a senior executive who has spent much of his career managing and advising on information technology for government. He is currently the chief information officer at the CSIRO. He has long been interested in history and sees research into his family as a project to recover detail missing in our Australia’s story. Combining his interest in history with his professional focus, which uses digital technologies to deliver insight, his research uses eResearch tools and techniques.

Dr Barbara Dawson worked for the Australian Dictionary of Biography in the Research School of Social Sciences at ANU as a research editor from 1999 to 2011. She is now a school visitor in the School of History. She has written widely on Australian colonial history.

Dr Karen Fox is a research editor for the Australian Dictionary of Biography and a research fellow in the National Centre of Biography in the School of History at ANU. Karen specialises in Australian and New Zealand history, and she is especially interested in women’s, gender and feminist history; imperial and colonial history; the history of celebrity; and biography and life writing. She has taught Australian and imperial history and biography at ANU, and she is the author of Māori and Aboriginal Women in the Public Eye: Representing Difference, 1950–2000 (2011).

After a career in research, a master’s degree in professional writing at University of Technology Sydney and having published several monographs, Nichola Garvey is currently enrolled in a PhD in the National Centre of Biography, to write a thesis on ‘Second Fleet Women, First-Rate Survivors’.

Prue Gill is a teacher of senior secondary and tertiary students in the fields of English, literature, theory of knowledge and English method. She has published on the literature classroom and the Australian curriculum. Her most recent publication is a teaching memoir entitled ‘Multiple Complicities: Reliving a Life in the Classroom’, published in Changing English (2016). She has a BEd and an MA (Women’s Studies).

Michelle Grattan AO is one of Australia’s most respected political journalists. She has been a member of the Canberra parliamentary press gallery for more than 40 years, during which time she has covered all the most significant stories in Australian politics. As a former editor of the Canberra Times, Grattan was also the first female editor of an Australian daily metropolitan newspaper. She currently has a dual role with an academic position at the University of Canberra and as associate editor (politics) and chief political correspondent at the Conversation.

After a career in the public service and having an MA and BLitt, Les Hetherington enrolled in the National Centre of Biography, ANU, to write a thesis part time on ‘Vaillante Soeur: Marie Caroline Niau and Her Family in France, England and Australia, 1820–1956’, a transnational, cross-generational and women-centred microhistory of Marie Caroline Niau, her daughter Josephine Hyacinthe Niau and their family. Les died in September 2018 and this this review is published posthumously.

Michèle Horne is an independent history scholar with an academic background in environmental sciences and history. Her career includes 20 years experience living in Indonesia and Laos while working as a researcher and manager of development aid projects. She spent three years living in remote North Sumatra (Indonesia) learning the language and understanding the cultural diversities of the area. Michèle recently completed a master of studies at ANU specialising in methodologies for writing biographies. Her particular interest in prisoners of war on the Burma–Thailand Railway was initially generated by meeting a former prisoner.

Dr Mary Lush is a scientist, with published research on aspects of the physiology of plants. After retiring she expanded her research interests to history and biography, including oral history. With Elizabeth Roberts she published work on William Hughston (see Roberts). She participated in a project on World War I and is currently working on a collection of letters from World War II. She holds a PhD from ANU.

Dr Emma McEwin is the author of An Antarctic Affair (2008) and The Many Lives of Douglas Mawson (2018). She has a BA and Honours degree in English literature and a PhD in creative writing from the University of Adelaide.

Melanie Nolan is professor of history, director of the National Centre of Biography and general editor of the Australian Dictionary of Biography, ANU. She chairs the Editorial Board of ANU.Lives, the ANU Press’s series in biography. She is currently under contract with Routledge to write Historian’s Biographical Practices.

Dr Juliette Peers is a postgraduate supervisor and senior researcher in textile design in the School of Architecture and Urban Design at RMIT. Her interests span both classical art history (covering design and applied art) and contemporary art and design. She has published widely as a classical art historian in Australia, as well as in British and North American publications including Pre-Raphaelite Sculpture and the Dictionary of Women Artists.

Dr Elizabeth Roberts is a retired academic and past senior fellow of the Faculty of Business and Economics at the University of Melbourne. She has a PhD from that university with research in accounting and organisational information systems. She has a long association with Fintona Girls’ School and is a former chair of its board of directors. She is the co-author with Mary Lush of a related article, ‘William Hughston 1867–1930: His Life and Legacy’ (Victorian Historical Journal 2015, vol 86(2) pp. 299–320).

Dr Sophie Scott-Brown’s research interests encompass British and Australasian intellectual history, life writing and performance theory. Her book, The Histories of Raphael Samuel: Portrait of a People’s Historian (2017) addressed the politics of pluralism in postwar British historiography. Her current work continues to engage with historiography, investigating the significance and invocation of the past in contemporary environmental thought. She is currently a lecturer in philosophy at the University of East Anglia, United Kingdom. 

Dr Tiping Su (苏锑平) is head of the Centre for Australian Studies, Xi’an International Studies University, China. He obtained his PhD from Renmin University of China and visited ANU as a post-doctoral fellow in 2015–16. He has published many papers on Australian studies; this is his first English language publication.

Geoff Wharton is a professional historian and community relations specialist based in North Queensland. He has contributed field work and cultural heritage research for the Mapoon and Napranum communities on Western Cape York Peninsula for over 35 years. He managed projects for the establishment of war memorials at Mapoon (2010) and Napranum (2014), as well as the First Contact Memorial at Mapoon, developed by the Mapoon Aboriginal Shire Council, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Queensland Government in 2013. Geoff recently completed World War I military service biographies of 13 people from the Yarrabah community.

Dr Stephen Wilks completed his PhD entitled ‘“Now is the psychological moment”—Earle Page and the Imagining of Australia’ earlier this year. He was awarded The Australian National University’s College of Arts and Social Sciences PhD Publishing Prize to rework his thesis for publication. After a career in the public service, he has now joined the National Centre of Biography on a new political history research project, which the Department of the House of Representatives is funding on speakers, deputy speakers and clerks of the house going right back to Federation, a pilot that, it is envisaged, will lead to a broader dictionary project.