Sydney University graduate (and writer for Honest History) appointed Executive Director of Toynbee Prize Foundation

Aden Knaap, a graduate in History and Law from the University of Sydney and now a PhD student and Knox Fellow at Harvard University, has been elected Executive Director of the Toynbee Prize Foundation. The Toynbee Prize was established to

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Hutchison, Meggie: Q & A with Christina Twomey

Hutchison, Meggie ‘Q & A with Christina Twomey‘, Australian Historical Association Early Career Researchers, 1 February 2017 Christina Twomey, Professor of History at Monash University, answers questions about how she became an academic historian and lessons learnt along the way.

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Bongiorno, Frank: The Australian history boom has busted, but there’s hope it may boom again

Frank Bongiorno ‘The Australian history boom has busted, but there’s hope it may boom again‘, The Conversation, 25 January 2017 First in a series on Australian identity, this piece from one of Honest History’s distinguished supporters, Frank Bongiorno, looks at

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Faber, David: An activist sense of history: indications for users

David Faber* ‘An activist sense of history: indications for users’, Honest History, 20 December 2016 ‘Never underestimate the power of dogma when propagandistically spread about among people who do not know much history.’ (Lawrence Davidson) We all know that those

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Willis, Ian: Local history: a view from the bottom

Ian Willis ‘Local history: a view from the bottom‘, History Workshop, 5 December 2016 Camden, NSW, historian writes about the practice of local history. Scholars occasionally need to take a look downwards from the heights of the academy to see

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Edgar, Bill: Where’s the 19th century in the National History Curriculum?

Bill Edgar ‘The Australian National History Curriculum: A note of concern: whither the 19th century?‘ Honest History, 16 December 2016 We have received the attached brief document from Dr Bill Edgar of Perth. He asks: Have the “movers and shakers”

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Rizzetti, Janine: Contesting Australian history: a festschrift for Marilyn Lake

Janine Rizzetti ‘Contesting Australian History: a Festschrift for Marilyn Lake‘, The Resident Judge of Port Phillip, 13 December 2016 A report of this recent event held at the University of Melbourne in honour of Professor Marilyn Lake. The author mentions

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Honest History document: the primary schools – the teaching of history

‘Honest History document: the primary schools – the teaching of history’, Honest History, 13 December 2016 From The Catholic Press (Sydney), 31 January 1918, p. 14 From all sides we hear the complaint that history is a difficult subject both

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Catching up with The Conversation: three very worthwhile days (and no pay-wall)

Queensland University of Technology academic, Axel Bruns, set out earlier this year a cogent argument for preserving social media as ‘a first draft of the present’ in a similar way to how journalism has traditionally been described as ‘the first

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Griffiths, Tom: The Art of Time Travel: Historians and Their Craft

Griffiths, Tom The Art of Time Travel: Historians and Their Craft, Black Inc., Melbourne, 2016 No matter how practised we are at history, it always humbles us. No matter how often we visit the past, it always surprises us. The art

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An anthropologist, an historian and his historians: Diane Bell on Tom Griffiths

‘An anthropologist, an historian and his historians: Diane Bell on Tom Griffiths’, Honest History, 26 October 2016 Diane Bell* reviews Tom Griffiths, The Art of Time Travel: Historians and Their Craft Who is your favourite Australian historian? Why? In 14

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Rees, Anne: How women historians smashed the glass ceiling

Rees, Anne ‘How women historians smashed the glass ceiling‘, The Conversation, 19 October 2016 Since the 1970s, the [history] profession has become conspicuous for the number of women in its ranks and the widespread acceptance of feminist scholarship. Compared to

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (13): DVA materials help children today debate conscription then

‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (13): DVA materials help children today debate conscription then’, Honest History, 11 October 2016 updated Update 21 October 2016:  Queensland Government Anzac Centenary website has a useful summary on conscription in 1916. The Divided Sunburnt

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Online Gem No. 12: David Scott Mitchell and his library, a Sydney icon

Online Gem No. 12: David Scott Mitchell and his library, a Sydney icon, Honest History, 13 September 2016 David Scott Mitchell, born in Sydney in 1836, has been described as Australia’s greatest book collector. He was an early undergraduate of

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Stephens, David: We go to Rio: questioning received war history

Stephens, David ‘We go to Rio: questioning received war history’, Teaching History (History Teachers’ Association of New South Wales), 50, 3, September 2016, pp. 4-6 Pdf accessible here made available by courtesy of HTANSW, which holds copyright. Anzac may be

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Six of the best: recent posts on the future of history

Earlier this week we posted Neville Buch’s piece, ‘Do professional historians have a future?’ It has been very popular, with hundreds of views already. Serendipitously, blogs and online sources have thrown up lots of related material. Swansea University historian of

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Buch, Neville: Do professional historians have a future?

Buch, Neville ‘Do professional historians have a future?‘ Honest History, 30 August 2016 The author, a professional historian based in Queensland, looks at statistics for tertiary history courses. He spells out the need to grow the non-academic employment market for

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Do professional historians have a future?

Neville Buch ‘Do professional historians have a future?’ Honest History, 30 August 2016 Peter Mandler argued in his 2015 Aeon essay that the ‘crisis in the humanities’ since the 1950s has never existed except in the minds of humanities professors.[1]

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Piggott, Michael: Charles Bean’s legacy: UNSW Canberra conference, July 2016

Piggott, Michael ‘“Charles Bean’s legacy”: UNSW Canberra conference, July 2016‘, Honest History, 2 August 2016 Update 6 August 2016: Peter Stanley, Honest History professor, Research Professor at UNSW Canberra, and a curator of the Bean exhibition, writes about the exhibition.

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Charles Bean’s legacy: UNSW Canberra conference, July 2016

Michael Piggott ‘”Charles Bean’s legacy”: UNSW Canberra conference, July 2016’, Honest History, 2 August 2016 For once in considering a conference, the curate’s egg judgment ‘good in parts’ doesn’t apply, though this conference did have parts and it was hosted

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McGrath, Ann: Secrets of nation

McGrath, Ann ‘Secrets of nation‘, Inside Story, 15 July 2016 By the 1960s, when I was growing up there, Queensland had become skilled at burying the Aboriginal past, and Queenslanders spoke about its traces in hushed tones. As a child,

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Loewen, James W.: Lies my teacher told me

Loewen, James W. ‘Lies my teacher told me‘, Information Clearing House, 9 July 2016 Undated video interview with Loewen, who is a sociologist critical of the received view of American history. Loewen’s widely read Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything

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Sherratt, Tim: Investigating the Hansard black hole

Sherratt, Tim ‘Investigating the Hansard black hole‘, Tim Sherratt: Research Notebook, 29 May, 10 July 2016 Not about the Budget black hole this time but about deficiencies in the ParlInfo search engine which countless people have used for research in

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The Resident Judge of Port Phillip journeys to AHA Ballarat

Update 8 July 2016: Janine has added some more about the next day of the Conference, covering papers on the Red Cross during World War I, Australian soldiers in the Boer War, museums, and living and dying. Of particular interest

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Wide-ranging AHA conference in Ballarat nicely captured from a distance via Tweets

Yvonne Perkins, who blogs as Stumbling through the Past, didn’t go to the Australian Historical Association conference in Ballarat this year but she is still keeping in touch by following and collating the Tweets coming out of it (#ozha2016). Yvonne’s

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Kindt, Julia: Guide to the classics: The Histories by Herodotus

Kindt, Julia ‘Guide to the classics: The Histories by Herodotus‘, The Conversation, 23 May 2016 For his pioneering critical enquiry into the past [Herodotus] was named “father of history” by Cicero. His love of stories and storytelling, however, was notorious

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Bruns, Axel: A first draft of the present: Why we must preserve social media content

Bruns, Axel ‘A first draft of the present: Why we must preserve social media content‘, The Conversation, 16 May 2016 History is written on the basis of records that survive and are accessible. Even journalism has traditionally been described as

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Clark, Anna: Private Lives, Public History

Clark, Anna Private Lives, Public History, Melbourne University Press, Carlton, Vic., 2016 The past is consumed on a grand scale: popularised by television programs, enjoyed by reading groups, walking groups, historical societies and heritage tours, and supported by unprecedented digital

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Review note: a reasonably flexible Anzac Day package from DVA for little kids

‘Review note: a reasonably flexible Anzac Day package from DVA for little kids’, Honest History, 26 April 2016 Honest History has often been critical of the products the official commemoration industry puts in front of children. We thought the prize-winning

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Carr, Nicholas: When our culture’s past is lost in the cloud

Carr, Nicholas ‘When our culture’s past is lost in the cloud‘, Washington Post, 25 March 2016 A review of Abby Smith Rumsey’s book When We are No More: How Digital Memory is Shaping our Future. (Perhaps significantly, some editions of

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Review note: UK-based Gallipoli 100 has useful resources for schools

‘Review note: UK-based Gallipoli 100 has useful resources for schools‘, Honest History, 17 March 2016 Gallipoli 100 is based in the United Kingdom and has put together some useful resources related to … yes, Gallipoli. The site includes information about

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Daley, Paul: Cultural institutions crisis and history being militarised

Daley, Paul ‘Our major cultural institutions are in crisis – and our history is being militarised‘, Guardian Australia, 22 February 2016 updated ‘What price do we put on a nation’s memory? And what should that memory recall?’ Analyses the current

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A man of the mind: John Hirst 1942-2016

Michael Piggott ‘A man of the mind: John Hirst 1942-2016’, Honest History, 16 February 2016 Honest History has, over the past two years, praised and criticised various institutions’ and authors’ representations of the past, but rarely looked at an historian

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Piggott, Michael: A man of the mind: John Hirst 1942-2016

Piggott, Michael ‘A man of the mind: John Hirst 1942-2016‘, Honest History, 16 February 2016 Honest History committee member and distinguished archivist, Michael Piggott, reviews the work of John Hirst, who died recently. This obituary draws on the tributes of

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ABC Radio National Ockham’s Razor: Feeding curiosity

ABC Radio National ‘Feeding curiosity‘, Ockham’s Razor, 24 January 2016 Robyn Williams introduces Peter Macinnis, former science teacher and now writer of history books, who talks whimsically about he enjoys and writes history. Audio and transcript.

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Brown, Claire: effective note-taking

Brown, Claire ‘What’s the best, most effective way to take notes?‘ The Conversation, 22 May 2015 Education researcher gives some useful tips for students and researchers. Also links to a later piece by the same author on taking notes on

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Walker, Andrew: publish or perish or publication for public?

Walker, Andrew ‘Shift away from “publish or perish” puts the public back into publication‘, The Conversation, 4 December 2015 Article riffing off suggestions that governments will make research publication less important – and public engagement more important – in calculations

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Archives A.C.T.: Find of the Month 2008-

Archives A.C.T. Find of the Month 2008- This is a treasure trove of local (in this case, Canberra and A.C.T.) history as found in files in the A.C.T. Archives. The idea is simple: pull out a file and present the

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Finding Australian history resources

‘What’s the best way into Australian history resources?’ Honest History, 13 October 2015 First, there’s the Honest History website. There’s a guide to the site and we recommend browsing. You will see that, while we target issues of current relevance,

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Online gem No. 1: Myall Creek Massacre

The Myall Creek massacre of June 1838 led to the death of 28 Aboriginal men, women and children and to the trial of 11 of their white assailants. Seven were found guilty and were executed in December 1838. The first

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Echevarria’s trouble with (military) history: highlights reel

‘Echevarria’s trouble with (military) history: highlights reel’, Honest History, 12 September 2015 This post offers highlights from an article that is at once a decade old and more broadly relevant than just to the teaching of military history. Antulio J.

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Nevius, James: ignoring half the history of a country

Nevius, James ‘To teach only “American exceptionalism” is to ignore half the country’s story‘, Guardian Australia, 3 August 2015 Ostensibly an American story but relevant to every country, including Australia, where it is a theme Honest History has returned to

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Stanley, Peter: Çanakkale conference reflections 2015

Stanley, Peter ‘Headphones, genocide and Fanta: reflections on the Çanakkale Gallipoli conference’, Honest History, 4 August 2015 This is an extended report of a major international conference held at Çanakkale, Turkey, in May 2015, with participants from many countries. The

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Stephens, David: And the children went: Hands on History at the War Memorial

Stephens, David ‘“And the children went”: Hands on History at the Australian War Memorial‘, Honest History, 4 August 2015 A description of a ‘Hands on History’ session for school children on holidays, leading in to an assessment of how the

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And the children went: Hands on History at the War Memorial

David Stephens ‘”And the children went”: Hands on History at the Australian War Memorial in the school holidays’, Honest History, 4 August 2015 During the last school holidays, the Australian War Memorial ran some ‘Hands on History’ sessions for children.

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Çanakkale Gallipoli conference reflections 2015

Peter Stanley ‘Headphones, genocide and Fanta: reflections on the Çanakkale Gallipoli conference’, Honest History, 4 August 2015 ‘International’ conferences are often hard work, hard to organise, hard to fund, hard to run and hard to attend, especially as an ‘international’

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Kelly. T. Mills: historical method through hoaxes

Kelly, T. Mills ‘Teaching students to lie: historical method through hoaxes‘, The Conversation, 18 August 2012 Fifty-one posters commented on this article which claims that, when you teach students how to lie, they become better historians. Kelly’s aim is to

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Australian Teachers of Media: Screen Education study guides

Australian Teachers of Media Metro Magazine Screen Education Study Guides The site contains links to many resources, notably study guides to many Australian television productions, including The War That Changed Us, Gallipoli, and Australia: the Story of Us, all reviewed

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Houlbrook, Matt: being a one trick historian

Houlbrook, Matt ‘On being a one trick historian‘, The Trickster Prince, 29 June 2015 The author looks at why he always ends up writing the same sort of history. Habits shape and constrain how we work as historians. From the

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Sangha, Laura: What is history for?

Sangha, Laura ‘What is history for? Or: doing history/thinking historically‘, The Many-headed Monster, 16 June 2015 Blog piece based on a lecture to a second year university class. Researching, says the author, ‘I was struck by the fact that the

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Review note: accessing three special editions

‘Review note: accessing three special editions’, Honest History, 9 June 2015 The title of this note is chosen deliberately: while, like any review, this one will do some assessing it is also concerned with accessing – with how the reader

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Esterman, Matt: Undermining education

Esterman, Matt ‘Undermining education‘, My Mind’s Museum, 24 May 2015 Blog post from Sydney history teacher about the development of professional learning networks which throw open ‘the question of precisely which school one belongs to and which students are the

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Reynolds, Jonathan T., ed.: 30-second twentieth century

Reynolds, Jonathan T., ed. 30-Second Twentieth Century: the 50 Most Significant Ideas and Events, each Explained in Half a Minute, Pier 9, Sydney, 2015 Twentieth Century presents a unique approach to modern history, condensing 100 years of innovation and art,

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History curriculum uncertainty: Honest History factsheet

Education ministers (Commonwealth, state and territory) met over the telephone early last month as the Education Council. The outcome was somewhat opaque. It appeared in a media release from Commonwealth Minister Pyne, where the only reference to history as a

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van Weringh, Ilja: historiography resources

van Weringh, Ilja ‘Van Weringh’s library‘, Diigo Collection of historiographical links with particular reference to start of World War I but other great material also.

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Conway, Michael: Problem with history classes

Conway, Michael ‘The problem with history classes‘, The Atlantic, 16 March 2015 Currently, most students learn history as a set narrative—a process that reinforces the mistaken idea that the past can be synthesized into a single, standardized chronicle of several

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Landsberry, Belinda: Anzac Ted

Landsberry, Belinda Anzac Ted, EK Books, Wollombi, NSW, 2014 A children’s book about a teddy bear who goes to war. There are reviews and a preview at the book link above and the bear’s (author’s) website. Another review is here,

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Can we bear Anzac Ted?

‘Can we bear Anzac Ted? A review’, Honest History, 8 March 2015 Peter Stanley* reviews Anzac Ted by Belinda Landsberry At what age do we feel able to introduce our children to the idea and the reality of war and

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Honest History goes to school: Glebe symposium

Honest History is always ready to talk to schools and to teachers. Thanks to Matt Esterman, from St Scholastica’s College, Glebe Point, in Sydney, Honest History was able to provide three representatives for a symposium with History Extension (Year 12)

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Cutler, David: Eric Foner on knowing and teaching history

Cutler, David ‘“You have to know history to actually teach it”‘, The Atlantic, 10 January 2014 Eric Foner is a Pulitzer Prize winner (2011 for The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery) who has written a number of books

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Review note: historiography miscellany

‘Review note: historiography miscellany’, Honest History, 21 January 2015 Herodotus Reaching back more than 2400 years to one of the founders of the discipline seems a good place to start. Herodotus, a Greek born in modern day Turkey, penned his

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Stephens, David: ADFA presentation on teaching children about war

David Stephens ‘Top down, bottom up, or bit by bit? Teaching children about war: paper to ADFA Summer School, 21 January 2015‘, Honest History, 21 January 2015 These are notes of a presentation to the UNSW Canberra ADFA Summer School

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Allan, Susan: Governments and history: David Stephens interview

Allan, Susan ‘”Governments want a history that reflects their agenda“‘, World Socialist Web Site, 8 January 2015 Long interview with Honest History secretary, David Stephens, speaking in a personal capacity. The interview covers the politicisation of the Great War centenary

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Abjorensen, Norman & James C. Docherty: Historical Dictionary of Australia

Abjorensen, Norman & James C. Docherty Historical Dictionary of Australia, Rowman & Littlefield, Lanham MD, 4th edition, 2014; electronic version available This fourth edition of Historical Dictionary of Australia covers its history through a chronology, an introductory essay, appendixes, and an extensive

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National History Challenge essays cover many strands of our history

The National History Challenge winners for 2014 have been announced. The national young historian was Angus Christie, a Year 5 student from The Friends School in Hobart, for his film on changing perspectives on Australia’s participation in the Vietnam War.

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Stephens, David: Do spiffing war yarns persist?

Stephens, David ‘Empire sun has set but do spiffing war yarns persist?‘ Honest History, 2 December 2014 This analytical piece compares WH Fitchett’s 1897 Deeds that Won the Empire: Historic Battle Scenes with Audacity: Stories of Heroic Australians in Wartime,

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Mitchell, Rose & Andrew Janes, ed.: Maps: their untold stories

Mitchell, Rose & Andrew Janes, ed. Maps: their Untold Stories: Map Treasures from the National Archives, Bloomsbury, London, 2014 A map is a snapshot of a place, a city, a nation or even the world at a given point in

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History is about maps

‘History is about maps’, Honest History, 2 December 2014 Steve Flora reviews Maps: their Untold Stories: Map Treasures from the National Archives, edited by Rose Mitchell and Andrew Janes, and notes some other recent cartographical arrivals It used to be

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Do spiffing war yarns persist?

David Stephens ‘Empire sun has set but do spiffing war yarns persist?’ Honest History, 2 December 2014 Some talk of Alexander And some of Hercules Of Hector and Lysander And such great names as these. But of all the world’s

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Clark, Anna: Historical consciousness across generations

Clark, Anna ‘Inheriting the past: historical consciousness across generations‘, Historical Encounters, 1, 1, 2014, pp. 88-102 Despite significant research into the meaning and operation of historical consciousness, there is still much to be understood about its hereditary function. For example,

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Women missing from the story

The fact that none of these [Ballarat 1854] women’s names is as familiar to us as that of Peter Lalor points to the inherent gender bias of Australian nationalism. In fact, men and women from many lands stood together beneath

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Evans, Richard J.: Tory interpretation of history

Evans, Richard J. ‘The wonderfulness of us (the Tory interpretation of history‘, London Review of Books, 17 March 2011 This article was brought to our attention by a reference in Clive Logan’s Supplementary Material to the Report of the Curriculum

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Code, Bill: PMs’ childhood homes

Code, Bill ‘The childhood homes of Australia’s prime ministers – in pictures‘, Guardian Australia, 28 October 2014 The imminent (but then delayed) demolition of the home in Kew, Victoria, where Gough Whitlam was born (reputedly on the kitchen table) provoked

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Highlights reel: curriculum review Supplementary Material

‘Highlights reel: curriculum review Supplementary Material’, Honest History, 4 November 2014 This highlights reel provides more detail from the Supplementary Material published with the Review of the Australian Curriculum Final Report (Donnelly-Wiltshire). Our initial take on the history parts of

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Honest History list: seven general histories of Australia and beyond

We can’t manage links to full text with most of these references but we can provide a summary of what’s in them and who wrote them. There’s a counter-factual collection also, to give a different perspective: Alison Bashford and Stuart

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Stephens, David: Donnelly-Wiltshire fire a salvo

Stephens, David ‘Donnelly-Wiltshire gunners fire a civilised salvo – but will Minister Pyne follow up?‘ Honest History, 15 October 2014 Analysis of the report of the national curriculum review, paying particularly attention to what it says about the teaching of

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Donnelly-Wiltshire fire a salvo – but will Minister Pyne follow up?

Stephens, David ‘Donnelly-Wiltshire gunners fire a civilised salvo – but will Minister Pyne follow up?’ Honest History, 15 October 2014 and updated If history was as predictable as the history curriculum recommendations of the Donnelly-Wiltshire report we would have no

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History pumped in

More and more, what we “feel” about collective history seems like something manufactured, and kind of pumped into us, rather than a real emotion. (Michael Stipe, musician and commentator, writing about 9/11 and related issues)

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War and sentimentality

Sentimentality distances and fetishizes its object; it is the natural ally of jingoism. So long as we indulge it, we remain incapable of debating the merits of war without being charged with diminishing those who fought it. (Elizabeth Samet, West

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Beautiful the next

The support we receive from the school community is most rewarding and plays a vital role in our mission to ensure that the youth of today are aware of and appreciate the importance of our military history to our Australian

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History thickets

History is a dense, wild, bramble-choked thicket of unpredictable events, causes, effects and interconnecting influences from which jobbing historians hack out messy clumps sized to become books, articles or – should some competing vandal have already slashed through an area

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Beaumont, Joan, et al.: ANU Archives annual lectures

Beaumont, Joan, et al. ANU Archives Annual Lectures The ANU Archives and the Friends of the Noel Butlin Archives Centre sponsor an annual lecture in Canberra and podcasts or vodcasts of recent ones are available. They include: 2014 Professor Joan Beaumont,

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Honest History list: seven resources on teaching history

The Honest History website includes a number of items tagged ‘Teaching history’. Some of them are also tagged ‘Using and abusing history’. Here is a selection: Parkes and Sharp analyse how five secondary history textbooks treat Gallipoli and Simpson and

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Defining moment

The arrival of the first fleet was the defining moment in the history of this continent. Let me repeat that: it was the defining moment in the history of this continent. It was the moment this continent became part of

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Macintyre, Stuart: Launch of Holbrook’s Anzac

Macintyre, Stuart ‘Launch of Anzac, the Unauthorised Biography, by Carolyn Holbrook’, Honest History, 15 September 2014 This is an edited version of Professor Macintyre’s speech at Readings, Carlton, 2 September 2014. Frank Bongiorno reviews the book. The author speaks at

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Sorkin, Andrew Ross: Big history and Bill Gates

Sorkin, Andrew Ross ‘So Bill Gates has this idea for a History Class‘, New York Times, 5 September 2014 About a DVD-based history course, anchored by an Australian professor, David Christian. “Big History” did not confine itself to any particular

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Gallipoli Children’s Book Project

Remembering and Healing, an innovative community-based peace group in Lismore, NSW, is about to invite authors and budding authors to take part in a literary competition for books on the theme of Anzac but with a message of peace and

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Hermes and Eirene: exploring history and peace

Two new websites have just launched, addressing matters of great interest. The first, Historical Encounters, a venture of the Hermes group at the University of Newcastle, is an online journal of historical consciousness, historical cultures and history education. Historical Encounters

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Taylor, Tony: History teaching under the Coalition

Taylor, Tony ‘Evidence-free beliefs: history in the hands of the Coalition‘, The Conversation, 22 August 2014 The author anticipates the (possibly imminent) release of the Donnelly-Wiltshire report to Minister Pyne on the national curriculum, including the history component. He reports a survey

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Parkes, Robert J. & Heather Sharp: Gallipoli in school textbooks

Parkes, Robert J. & Heather Sharp ‘Nietzchean perspectives on representations of national history in Australian school textbooks: what should we do with Gallipoli?‘ Ensayos: Revista de la Facultad de Educación de Albacete [Spain], 29, 1, 2014, pp. 159-81 Summarises two

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Foley, Gary & Elizabeth Muldoon: Indigenous curriculum

Foley, Gary & Elizabeth Muldoon ‘Pyning for Indigenous rights in the Australian curriculum‘, The Conversation, 15 August 2014 Argues that Indigenous history is under-represented or misrepresented in the current national history curriculum for secondary students. In particular, there is inadequate

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The children suffer

David Stephens ‘The children suffer’, Honest History, 11 August 2014 Osbert Sitwell’s The Next War, published in 1918, depicts some plutocrats deciding what would be an appropriate war memorial. The senior plutocrat puts a suggestion which his colleagues eagerly take

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The history curriculum, 1904

As the teaching of history again looms into the spotlight, this statement echoes back to us from a century ago. A course which entirely ignores history, which knows nothing of political economy or philosophy, and which expunges anything related to

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Backpackers and Eureka

Eureka was a youth movement. The inhabitants of Ballarat, like the youth of a century later, believed that the times they were a’changing. And like today’s backpackers, the gold rush generation was transient, expansive, adventurous: in search of experience, questing

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Children and history

Every State wishes to promote national pride, and is conscious that this cannot be done by unbiased history. The defenseless children are taught by distortions and suppressions and suggestions. The false ideas as to the history of the world which

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Stephens, David: The children suffer

Stephens, David ‘The children suffer‘, Honest History, 11 August 2014 A version (including links) of an article that appears on John Menadue’s blog, Pearls and Irritations. An earlier piece on the same subject appeared in Honest History’s first newsletter. There

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History teaches us

To the English intelligence’, reported the London correspondent of the Argus in 1934, ‘it seems strange that a change of Government should mean the eclipse of one form of history teaching and the rise of another’. The article goes on

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Highlights reel: Margaret MacMillan on history wars

‘Highlights reel: Margaret Macmillan on history wars’, Honest History, 28 July 2014 As the Donnelly-Wiltshire report on the national curriculum is about to be handed to the Australian Minister for Education, Christopher Pyne, it is instructive to look at a

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Highlights reel: Margaret Macmillan on history

‘Highlights reel: Margaret Macmillan on history’, Honest History, 20 July 2014 Canadian-born, now Oxford-based historian, Margaret Macmillan, has made a distinguished contribution to the literature of the Great War with her book, The War That Ended Peace: The Road to

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Australian Historical Association Conference 2014

The conference was held in Brisbane 7-11 July 2014. Abstracts of the papers presented are available as a pdf  AHA_Conference_ Abstract Book. Bloggers Shauna Hicks and Yvonne Perkins have posted comments as has Marion Diamond, with some comments on the

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MAPW et al: Enduring effects of war

Medical Association for Prevention of War, Act for Peace & History Teachers’ Association of Victoria The Enduring Effects of War: Introduction, MAPW, Act for Peace and HTAV, Melbourne, 2014 Comprehensive (125 pages) and realistic lesson materials (pdf with links) prepared

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Stephens, David & Steve Flora: Simpson Prize

Stephens, David & Steve Flora ‘The Simpson Prize: history or civics?’ Honest History, 8 July 2014 and updated There is a link below to a pdf of the article. In summary, the article analyses a number of aspects of the

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O’Brien, Annemaree: Creating multimodal texts

O’Brien, Annemaree Creating Multimodal Texts Portal to ‘literacy, media and technology resources for teachers’, referencing the Australian Curriculum and linking to a wide range of resources for classroom production of music videos, posters, short films, comics and other media. Could

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Primary school children and honest history

Aint Google amazing? In the week where HH had an interesting exchange with the education people at the Australian War Memorial on teaching children about war, Google turned up an article on a number of US blogs with the fascinating

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Review note: centenary war and peace stories for children

‘Review note: centenary war and peace stories for children’, Honest History, 24 June 2014 updated He had killed a man not six hours before. He had killed six men during the past month – or was it a year? –

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Curriculum review interim report released

The preliminary report of the Donnelly-Wiltshire review of the national curriculum has been released, having been with the Minister since the end of March. (Earlier background.) The final report will be with the Minister (though not necessarily released) at the

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University of Adelaide Library: e-Books

University of Adelaide Library ‘e-Books‘, Honest History, 15 June 2014 We are adding this to the Recommended links section of the site but just wanted to give it a plug along the way. The site is an alphabetical list of

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Review note: research sources miscellany

‘Review note: research sources miscellany’, Honest History, 12 June 2014 Honest History’s constant (perhaps obsessive) digging into historical sources turns up, as well as individual gems, lodes of promising ore. From World War I, the National Archives has a finding

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Stanley, Peter: Patriotic teachers?

Stanley, Peter Do teachers have ‘patriotic’ obligations? Address to ACT-NSW History Teachers’ Associations conference, University of Canberra, 9 May 2014 Good morning and thank you for your kind invitation to speak to you today; and in greeting you I acknowledge

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Diamadis, Panayiotis: Gallipoli before and beyond Anzac

Diamadis, Panayiotis ‘Gallipoli before and beyond Anzac’, Honest History, 22 May 2014 311 Gallipoli Before and Beyond Anzac Parts I-II This article originally appeared in To Vema, September-October 2013. To Vema is Australia’s largest circulation bilingual Hellenic-English newspaper. The article

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Gaita, Raimond: Why study humanities?

Gaita, Raimond ‘Why study humanities?‘ The Conversation, 21 March 2014 Revised version of a talk to students in which Gaita talks about Indigenous Australians, Socrates, philosophy, the importance of becoming acquainted with great thinkers from the past, and the significance

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Pyne, Christopher: Crucible of nationhood

Pyne, Christopher ‘Crucible of nationhood‘, Pyne Online (originally published Australian Financial Review, 24-27 April 2014) The author is the Coalition’s Minister for Education. We should … remember how through this forge of war our infant nation reached out and grasped

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Teaching children about war

Update 9 June 2015: Simpson Prize and Audacity The Simpson Prize question for 2016 continues the welcome recent trend to ask proper history questions of Year 9 and 10 students but the nomination of the war-sanitising Audacity for a Children’s

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Stanley, Peter: On history

[Stanley, Peter] ‘Peter Stanley on history‘, NSW Writers’ Centre (2014) Transcript of brief interview in which Stanley answers questions: what inspired you to become an historian? what are the most challenging aspects of writing history? how do you choose your

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McIlvenny, Leonie: Research safari

McIlvenny, Leonie The Research Safari Website directed at teachers and students, covering all aspects of web-based research for assignments. Main sections are on defining, locating, selecting, organising, presenting, evaluating and the knowledge compass.

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Stephens, David: Memorial connects children with 62 000 dead

Stephens, David ‘Australian War Memorial offers opportunity for primary school children to connect with 62 000 Great War dead’, Honest History, 31 March 2014 The article describes the Australian War Memorial’s Roll of Honour Soundscape project in which primary school

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Museum Victoria: Immigration Museum

Museum Victoria Immigration Museum Portal to the resources held by the Museum containing ‘[m]oving stories of people from all over the world who have migrated to Australia’. Educational material, project suggestions and links to other sites.

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History Teachers’ Association of Australia: AC History Units

History Teachers’ Association of Australia AC History Units Eight units developed by the History Teachers’ Association of Australia to support teachers in the implementation of the Australian Curriculum: History (ACH). The units relate to Years 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9,

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Jauncey meets Mephistopheles (18 February 2014)

In November 2013 I presented a keynote address to the biennial conference convened by the energetic Narratives of War Research Group of the University of South Australia. In it I compared Australia’s memory of war with that of various countries

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Stephens, David: Minister Pyne and the curriculum – again

Stephens, David ‘Minister Pyne and the curriculum – again’, Honest History, January 2014 (and updated) The preliminary report of the Donnelly-Wiltshire review was released in June 2014. Donnelly interviewed. Gary Foley and Elizabeth Muldoon question the treatment of Indigenous history

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Pyne and the uncontested national narrative

David Stephens writes in the Canberra Times (23 December 2013) on Learning lessons of History, noting several views on the risks of a national history curriculum that would promote a simplistic or uncontested national narrative.

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Honest History: The national history curriculum and the coalition

Honest History ‘The national history curriculum and the coalition: Honest History Factsheet’, Honest History e-Newsletter no. 5, September 2013 When you change the government, do you change the curriculum as well? Should you? This article brings together some Coalition remarks

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Honest History: History in secondary schools Part I

‘History in secondary schools Part I: Honest History Factsheet’, Honest History e-Newsletter no. 6, October 2013 Honest History’s researchers match sections of Australian Curriculum History Year 9 against sections of the Honest History website which is to be launched 7

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Hurst, Daniel: Say after the minister

Hurst, Daniel ‘Say after the minister: old is new again‘, Sydney Morning Herald, 28 September 2013 Minister Pyne’s first extensive interview, touching on the history curriculum and other aspects. Comments from Honest History spokesperson.

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Carr, EH: What is history?

Carr, EH What is History? Penguin, Camberwell, Vic., 2008; first published Macmillan, London, 1961; 2nd edition 1987 A slim classic. Some of the key passages relate to fish and they are directly relevant to the recurring battles over the nature

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ACARA multiple authors: Australian Curriculum

ACARA multiple authors ‘The Australian Curriculum“, Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) Curriculum resources and information for Australian Curriculum: History Foundation to Year 12 and for other subject areas.

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About Teaching history

Click here for all items related to: Teaching history Honest History hopes to be useful to teachers of history, particularly at secondary and tertiary levels. We believe history teachers play an important role in helping students to develop the tools

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DVA multiple authors: DVA education publications

Department of Veterans’ Affairs multiple authors ‘Education resources: wars, conflicts and peace operations‘, Department of Veterans’ Affairs Links to 27 online publications, many with associated work books and teacher’s guides, some with CDs and some with primary and secondary versions,

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Australian War Memorial multiple authors: AWM education publications

Australian War Memorial multiple authors ‘Education publications‘, Australian War Memorial Portal to small selection of AWM publications, including posters, teachers’ notes, and the substantial booklets M is for Mates: Animals in Wartime from Ajax to Zep, Forever Yours: Stories of

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Woollacott, Angela, ed.: History for the Australian Curriculum

Woollacott, Angela, ed. History for the Australian Curriculum; 9, 10, Cambridge University Press, Port Melbourne, Vic., 2012 Multiple authors produce curriculum materials and exercises within the broad parameters of the Australian Curriculum: history for Years 9 and 10. The Curriculum

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AHA multiple authors: AHA resources

AHA multiple authors ‘Resources‘, Australian Historical Association Links to many cultural institutions and archives bodies, federal and state, as well as to the National Library’s Trove resource.

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HTAA multiple authors: HTAA resources

HTAA multiple authors ‘Resources‘, History Teachers’ Association of Australia Website page linking to a number of resources, including a separate site geared to the Australian Curriculum: history, the ACARA site, the education sections of the Department of Veterans’ Affairs and

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Triolo, Rosalie: Our schools and the war

Triolo, Rosalie Our Schools and the War: Victoria’s Education Department and the Great War, 1914-18, Australian Scholarly Publishing, North Melbourne, Vic., 2012 The Great War profoundly touched the lives of Australian teachers, school children and local communities, and with lasting

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Institute of Public Affairs: History teaching as arts and crafts

Institute of Public Affairs ‘How history teaching became arts and crafts‘, Foundations of Western Civilisation Program, 27 March 2013 Criticises the national curriculum for its ‘focus on sources, projects and technological gimmicks’ which ‘ultimately confuse children, who end up unable

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Taylor, Tony: History in politics

Taylor, Tony ‘History in politics: neoconservative progressivism, knowledgeable ignorance and the origins of the next history war‘, History Australia, 10, 2, August 2013, pp. 227-40 This article outlines the relationship between neoconservative politics in Australia and history education. It categorises

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Taylor, Tony: Curriculum history and politics

Taylor, Tony ‘Curriculum: a matter of history … and politics‘, Monash University: News and Events, 5 October 2012 Analyses a recent speech by former prime minister Howard, referring also to the response to it from the curriculum authority. (The author

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Honest History: History in secondary schools Part I: Honest History Factsheet

  History in secondary schools Part I: Honest History Factsheet, Honest History, 8 November 2013 In this article we have matched sections of Australian Curriculum History Year 9 against sections of the Honest History website which is to be launched

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Howard, John: National Press Club address, Australia Day 2006

Howard, John A sense of balance: the Australian achievement in 2006: address to the National Press Club, Great Hall, Parliament House, 25 January 2006 See also this; together the two references give a good insight into this Prime Minister’s views

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Howard, John: Menzies lecture 1996

Howard, John The 1996 Sir Robert Menzies Lecture: the beliefs and values which guide the Federal Government (18 November 1996) Criticises the ‘black armband’ view of history, amid a wide-ranging speech on aspects of Australia’s political history. May be compared

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Macintyre, Stuart with Anna Clark: History wars

Macintyre, Stuart with Anna Clark The History Wars, Melbourne University Press, Carlton, Vic., 2003; later editions including e-book Historical survey of a number of controversies affecting Australian historians and their craft. The book itself provoked further controversy, particularly about the

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Macintyre, Stuart, ed.: Historian’s conscience

Macintyre, Stuart, ed. The Historian’s Conscience: Australian Historians on the Ethics of History, Melbourne University Press, Carlton, Vic., 2004 The editor posed six questions to the contributors. Summarised: how do historians choose their histories? what balance do they strike between

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Clark, Anna: Teaching the nation

Clark, Anna Teaching the Nation: Politics and Pedagogy in Australian History, Melbourne University Press, Carlton, Vic., 2006 Starts from Prime Minister’s Howard’s well-known remark in 2000 at Gallipoli that ‘history was not being taught as it should be in Australia’s

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Christopher Pyne’s history curriculum

On 28 September 2013 Fairfax media online and in hardcopy newspapers carried extensive coverage by reporter Daniel Hurst of the stated intention of new Education Minister, Christopher Pyne, to take a stronger role in correcting ‘leftist’ agenda bias in school

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Clark, Anna: Teaching national narratives

Clark, Anna ‘Teaching national narratives and values in Australian schools‘, originally published, Agora (History Teachers Association of Victoria), 43, 1, 2008, pp. 4-9 Discusses the Howard Government’s education agenda, attitudes to it and the varying attitudes of students to the

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McKay, Jim: Battlefield tourism

McKay, Jim ‘A critique of the militarisation of Australian history and culture thesis: the case of Anzac battlefield tourism‘, Portal, 10, 1, January 2013 Criticises the authors of What’s Wrong with Anzac? for their ‘top-down’ approach and assumptions that the

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Rose, James: Australian War Memorial

Rose, James ‘Here’s looking at us #1 – the Australian War Memorial‘, Crikey, 13 August 2013 Blogger reviews the Memorial and asks whether we should see the dead commemorated there ‘as the War Memorial encourages us, as young men and women

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Honest History: The national history curriculum and the Coalition

The national history curriculum and the coalition: Honest History Factsheet Prime Minister Paul Keating said that when you change the government, you change the country. Do you change the curriculum as well? This article brings together some sources that may

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McKenna, Mark: Lest we inflate

McKenna, Mark ‘Lest we inflate: Why do Australians lust for heroic war stories?‘ The Monthly, December 2012 The author notes the proliferation of military books in the last decade, including some 150 with ‘Anzac’ or ‘Gallipoli’ in the title, and

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Lester, Tim & Marilyn Lake: What’s wrong with Anzac?

Lester, Tim & Marilyn Lake ‘What’s wrong with Anzac?‘ The Age: Breaking Politics, 25 April 2013 (video) Tim Lester interviews Professor Marilyn Lake about aspects of commemoration. Professor Lake suggests the treatment of Anzac has been characterised by commemoration without

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Brockman, John, ed.: Internet

Brockman, John, ed. Is the Internet Changing the Way You Think? The Net’s Impact on Our Minds and Future, Harper Perennial, New York & London, 2011 From the Edge Foundation. Not explicitly Australian but global and included here as a

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Curthoys, Ann & John Docker: Is history fiction

Curthoys, Ann & John Docker Is History Fiction? University of New South Wales Press, Sydney, 2010; first published 2005 ‘John Docker and Ann Curthoys find that history has a double character. It is both a rigorous scrutiny of sources, and,

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Curthoys, Ann & Ann McGrath, ed.: Writing histories

Curthoys, Ann & Ann McGrath, ed. Writing Histories: Imagination and Narration, Monash Publications in History, Monash University, Melbourne, 2000; republished Monash University Publishing, Melbourne, 2009 (full text online free) Nine historians reflect on their work as writers, exploring some of

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Curthoys, Ann & Ann McGrath: How to write history

Curthoys, Ann & Ann McGrath How to Write History that People Want to Read, UNSW Press, Sydney, 2009 ‘Aimed at all kinds of people who write history – academic historians, public historians, professional historians, family historians and students of all

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Clark, Anna: History’s children

Clark, Anna History’s Children: History Wars in the Classroom, New South, Sydney, 2008 ‘The classroom has become the battleground of the “history wars”, yet no-one ever asks the children what they think about Australian history and what they like –

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Arrow, Bongiorno & Wright, historians

Arrow, Michelle, Frank Bongiorno & Clare Wright, with Michael McKernan ‘Historians at work’, National Library of Australia podcast, 10 September 2012 (scroll down) Four historians talk about their craft (1h 45m).

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Arrow, Michelle: Making History

Arrow, Michelle ‘The Making History initiative and Australian popular history’, Rethinking History: The Journal of Theory and Practice, 15, 11, 2011, pp. 153-74; reprinted in Jerome de Groot ed., Public and Popular History, Routledge, London & New York, 2012. [The

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Bongiorno, Frank: Australian labour history

Bongiorno, Frank ‘Australian labour history: contexts, trends and influences’, Labour History, 100, May 2011, pp. 1-18 Labour history’s relationship to the labour movement and to the practice of history generally.

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