Annual lectures

Each year the ANU Archives and the Friends of the Noel Butlin Archives Centre present a lecture by a prominent researcher.

Next lecture

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Noel Butlin Archives Centre
+61 2 6125 2219

Past lectures

Exhibition launch "Building Australia’s National University” »

Tue 16 Mar 2021
To celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Australian National University (ANU) in 2021, the ANU Archives has curated a new exhibition"75 Years of the...

2020 Ruth Morgan: Archives for a dry and drying land »

Tue 20 Oct 2020
This lecture is now available online.  By all accounts, 2020 has been a remarkable year. Bushfires of unprecedented duration and spread, then a...

2019 Professor Jenny Hocking: Archival Secrets and Hidden Histories »

Tue 10 Sep 2019
Join us at the ANU Archives annual lecture for 2019 - 'Archival Secrets and Hidden Histories: Reasserting the Right to Public Access'. Public access...

Professor Simon Ville: Tales of the unexpected: why archival research remains important today »

Tue 9 Oct 2018
For the contemporary researcher, archival research is often considered antiquarian and too labour intensive to meet the publication demands of the...

2017 Dr Shino Konishi: Indigenous lives and the Australian Dictionary of Biography »

Mon 16 Oct 2017
Of the more than 12,000 individuals included in the Australian Dictionary of Biography (ADB) only 210 (1.5%) of all entries relate to Indigenous...

2016 Phil Carswell OAM: Did the Grim Reaper win? »

Tue 25 Oct 2016
The early history of HIV/AIDS in Australia was marked with controversial political decisions and public and social discrimination, anger and...

Did the Grim Reaper win? »

Tue 20 Sep 2016
Presented by ANU Archives and the Friends of the Noel Butlin Archives Centre, this lecture will cover the early history of HIV/AIDS in Australia and...

2015 Professor David Merrett: Whither business history? Memory, message and meaning »

Tue 11 Aug 2015
Professor David Merrett, the University of Melbourne explores the past 25 years as it experienced marked shifts in both the demand for and supply of...

2014 Professor Joan Beaumont: The Real War? Battles on the Australian home front 1914–19 »

Tue 23 Sep 2014
If you read only one book about Australia's experience of World War I... make it Broken Nation, an account that joins the history of the war to the...

2013 Professor Jeannette Bastian: Whose memories, whose records: when the archival legacy of a colonial past meets the cultural records of a post-colonial future »

Wed 25 Sep 2013
Islands, specifically the former colonial islands of the Caribbean and the Pacific, share many similar archival and records issues. Questions around...

2012 Emeritus Professor Marian Sawer: Feminism for the 21st century »

Thu 13 Sep 2012
Feminism has suffered from 'false feminist death syndrome' for almost as long as it has existed. Some believe that now with a woman Prime Minister...

2011 annual lecture: Proud past, bright future »

Tue 15 Feb 2011
Senator John Faulkner presents the annual Archives lecture reflecting on the history of the Labour movement in Australia. His talk also opens the '...

2010 annual lecture: Smiths in Stasiland: Archival reminders of an uncomfortable Australian past (2010) »

Tue 14 Sep 2010
Dr Peter Stanley is currently researching Australia's Great War through the experience of people with the family name Smith, and German-Australians...

2009 annual lecture: Rethinking the Australian legend. Graeme Davison »

Tue 8 Sep 2009
Fifty years after its publication Russel Ward's book The Australian Legend remains the classic account of our national origins. In tracing Australia'...

2008 annual lecture: Alchemist magpies? Collecting archivists & their critics »

Tue 16 Sep 2008
Are archivists complicit in helping the victors write history, privileging some voices and silencing others? Are they alchemists transforming 'turds...

2007 annual lecture: Harry Potter & the Holocaust: Reflections on history & fiction »

Tue 18 Sep 2007
In recent debates over truth and fiction in history, the Holocaust has loomed large. It is often seen to be a litmus test for historians, in terms of...

2006 annual lecture: Repeating the mistakes of the past? Aborigines and the Pastoralists in the Northern Territory 1914-67 »

Tue 4 Apr 2006
What is happening to records of aboriginal people today? Will these archives survive?  Are we repeating the mistakes of the past?  These are the...

2005 annual lecture: Tradesmen's entrance. The contribution of trade journals to understanding capitalism in Australia »

Wed 25 May 2005
The lecture draws attention to a neglected body of Australian journalism, namely, trade periodicals.  Between the 1880s and 1960s Australian employer...

2004 annual lecture: The History Wars continued »

Wed 3 Nov 2004
A war is raging in historical circles.  Divisions about how to interpret Australian history and the politicisation of the topic - see in the...

2003 annual lecture: When History was rising fast: Australian history and the economic historians 1930-1960 »

Wed 12 Mar 2003
Professor Blainey will look at some of the leading Australian historians of the 1930s, 40s and 50s, including Keith Hancock EOG Shann, Brian...

Inaugural archives lecture: Confessions of a promiscuous researcher (2002) »

Thu 4 Apr 2002
Archives supply historians with raw material for their research.  Sensational discoveries, hidden truths and forgotten heroes abound on the archival...