New Fellows for 2013

Twenty-eight leading scholars have been elected in 2013 as Fellows of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, one of the highest honours available for achievement in the humanities in Australia.

We congratulate the following new Fellows:

Peter Brown

Peter Brown is Associate Professor and Reader (French Studies) at The Australian National University’s School of Language Studies. His contribution to research in the humanities crosses a number of fields, including nineteenth century French literature, translations and critical studies of postcolonial literature of the francophone world, and the geopolitics of French culture. Brown is internationally renowned for his pioneering study of French Pacific territories and their culture, focusing on New Caledonia and its literature. In 2002 he was decorated by the French government with a Chevalier des Palmes Académiques.

Peter Cochrane

Peter Cochrane is an independent scholar who has made an outstanding contribution to Australian historical scholarship and intellectual life. His work has ranged widely across a number of fields within Australian history. He is best known for his book Colonial Ambition: Foundations of Australian Democracy (2006), which was awarded both the Prime Minister’s Prize for Australian History and The Age Book of the Year in 2007. Cochrane has worked closely, as consultant and researcher, with a range of major Australian cultural institutions, including the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, the National Library of Australia, the State Library of New South Wales, the Australia Council, and the Australian War Memorial.

Nikolas Coupland

Nikolas Coupland is Distinguished Professor of Sociolinguistics at University of Technology Sydney and is considered to be one of the most influential shapers of sociolinguistics in the world. His major contributions include work on a contextual theory of style in dialect variations, and work on areas of accommodation theory, Welsh language and culture, and the sociolinguistics of ageing. Coupland co-founded the Journal of Sociolinguistics (Blackwell) in 1997 and currently co-edits the Oxford University Press book series Oxford Studies in Sociolinguistics.

Janet Fletcher

Janet Fletcher is Associate Professor in the School of Language and Linguistics at The University of Melbourne. She is one of Australia’s leading phoneticians and its leading practitioner in the field of laboratory phonology. Through a series of meticulous studies of timing, rhythm and intonation across a range of languages, Fletcher revolutionised the approach to instrumental phonetic research in prosody in Australia. Her research has contributed to new ways of thinking about the melody, timing and rhythm of language, and of the interplay of articulatory and acoustic factors, focusing in particular on cross-linguistic differences.

David Goodman

David Goodman is Associate Professor in the School of Historical and Philosophical Studies at The University of Melbourne, where he lectures in Australian and American cultural history. He is an exemplary and original scholar whose first book, Gold Seeking: Victoria and California in the 1850s (1994) won both the Hancock Prize for best first book, and the Ernest Scott Prize for the best book in Australian History, and some two decades later remains the standard account of its subject. His second monograph, Radio’s Civic Ambition: American Broadcasting and Democracy in the 1930s (2011), has also garnered widespread critical acclaim within the field. Goodman has twice been elected as the President of the Australian and New Zealand American Studies Association.

Yasmin Haskell

Yasmin Haskell holds the Cassamarca Foundation Chair in Latin Humanism at The University of Western Australia, and is a Chief Investigator in the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions. Haskell has an outstanding international reputation in the field of Neo-Latin Studies, particularly in the area of didactic, medical and scientific writings of the early modern period. She is on the editorial boards of Medievalia et Humanistica, Bibliotheca Latinitatis Novae, and has recently been invited to contribute to both the Oxford Companion to Neo-Latin and the Cambridge Guide to Reading Neo-Latin Literature. She has previously held research fellowships at Oxford University and Cambridge University.

Peter Holbrook

Peter Holbrook is Professor of Shakespeare and English Renaissance Literature at The University of Queensland, and is a Chief Investigator in the Australian Research Council Centre for Excellence in the History of Emotions. He is internationally respected as a leading scholar in Shakespeare and Early Modern drama, reflected by his election in 2011 as President of the International Shakespeare Association, the highest international administrative and ceremonial position in Shakespeare Studies, and one that has never been previously held by an Australian. Holbrook has also been active in literature administration in Australia as member of the Literature Board, Australia Council for the Arts (2006–9) and in the teaching of English in schools as member of the English Learning Area Reference Committee, Queensland Studies Authority (2010–11).

Michael Lewis

Michael Lewis is Professor in the Department of Japanese Studies at The University of Sydney. He is a historian of modern Japan with research interests in the intersections of social, cultural and scientific history. His work has attracted international acclaim, focussing on popular movements in nineteenth and twentieth century Japan. Before joining the Department of Japanese Studies at The University of Sydney, he directed the Asian Studies Centre at Michigan State University, where he led in creating the first All-Asia U.S. Department of Education National Resource Centre. He has also directed the Japan Centre for Michigan Universities in Hikone, and the Konan University Consortium Program in Kobe, and has been a visiting scholar at Harvard University, Stanford University, and the University of Tokyo.

Freya Mathews

Freya Mathews is Adjunct Professor of Environmental Philosophy in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences at La Trobe University. She is the author of over 50 articles in the area of ecological philosophy and co-edits the journal Philosophy Activism Nature. Her book The Ecological Self (1991) has become the classic text in environmental philosophy. Mathews’ expertise ranges over metaphysics, philosophy of science, philosophy of religion and history of ideas, evident in her writings on environmental philosophy as well as her work on animal ethics. Her current special interests include wildlife ethics and indigenous Australian and Chinese perspectives on sustainability. In addition to her research activities, she manages a private biodiversity reserve in Central Victoria.

Mark McKenna

Mark McKenna is Associate Professor in the Department of History at The University of Sydney. He is an outstanding scholar whose work, ranging across Aboriginal history, political history and biography, has made a substantial and significant contribution to history scholarship in Australia. In 2011 his book An Eye for Eternity: The Life of Manning Clark, won numerous prizes and awards, including the 2012 Prime Minister’s Prize for Non Fiction, the Douglas Stewart Prize for Non-Fiction (2012 NSW Premier’s Literary Award), the Nettie Palmer Prize for Non-Fiction (2011 Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards), the 2011 Queensland Premier’s Literary Awards Prize for Non-Fiction, and the 2011 South Australian Premier’s Award for Non-Fiction. Over the last decade he has held several distinguished positions overseas at the Australian Studies Centre in London, the Australian Studies Centre in Copenhagen and University College, Dublin.

Peter McNeil

Peter McNeil is Associate Dean (Research) in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building, as well as Professor of Design History at the University of Technology Sydney. Professor McNeil’s work in the history of fashion founded a new field of interdisciplinary research and critical enquiry. He is internationally recognised for his work in the fields of design and art history and fashion studies, with an emphasis upon questions of representation, consumption and social identity. He is currently leading a University of Technology Sydney Partner Grant with the Sydney Jewish Museum on a project entitled Dressing Sydney: The Jewish Fashion Story, and is on the editorial board of the Journal of Design History.

Ian McNiven

Ian McNiven is Professor of Indigenous Archaeology in the School of Geography and Environmental Science at Monash University. His pioneering work has transformed the understanding of the archaeology of Australian Indigenous coastal societies, in particular the Queensland coast and the islands of Torres Strait. McNiven’s research focuses on understanding the long-term development of specialised maritime societies, with a focus on the archaeology of seascapes and ritual and spiritual relationships with the sea. His other research interests include the development of Aboriginal eel aquaculture in western Victoria, the long-term development of Jawoyn rock art (Arnhem Land) and the colonial history of archaeology.

Scott McQuire

Scott McQuire is Associate Professor in the School of Culture and Communication at The University of Melbourne. He is an outstanding scholar of contemporary and historical media whose work has been translated into many languages. McQuire’s research explores the cultural effects of media technologies, with particular attention to their impact on the social relations of space and time, the formation of identity and the dynamics of cities. McQuire has held a number of distinguished research fellowships, including Visiting Fellowships at the Department of Film, Theatre and Television, University of California, Los Angeles (1998) and the Celeste Bartos International Film Study Center, Museum of Modern Art, New York (2000).

Julian Murphet

Julian Murphet is Professor in Modern Film and Literature and Director of the Centre for Modernism Studies at the University of New South Wales. Murphet is internationally recognised for his substantial and significant contributions to the fields of modernist and contemporary Australian and American fiction, drama, poetry and film. Murphet is also a distinguished literary theorist. Under his leadership, the Centre for Modernism Studies has become a world-renowned centre for literature, media and culture. He has held visiting positions at the University of California, Berkeley, and at Cambridge and Oxford Universities.

Daniel Nolan

Daniel Nolan is Professor of Philosophy at The Australian National University, as well as Honorary Professor at The University of Queensland and Associate Fellow at the University of Aberdeen. Nolan is recognised as one of the leading metaphysicians in the world, though his work also encompasses a wide range of fields, including philosophical logic, philosophy of science, philosophy of mathematics and philosophy of language. He is an internationally recognised expert on the philosophy of Anglo-American philosopher David Lewis. Nolan is particularly known for his work on theories of ‘impossible worlds’ and ‘theoretical virtues’. He won a Leverhulme Prize in 2005 and has held numerous prestigious visiting fellowships.

John Powers

John Powers is Professor in the School of Culture, History and Language at The Australian National University. He is internationally recognised as a leading scholar of Tibetan Buddhism and has played a major role in promoting its study for several decades. His early pioneering work was in Buddhist hermeneutics, requiring knowledge of Sanskrit and Tibetan, and he continues to publish in the field of Indian Buddhist hermeneutics. Powers’ work on current Sino-Tibetan relations has been described as ‘path breaking’ His current interests include gender and mysticism in Buddhism, and Chinese thought and modernity.

Libby Robin

Libby Robin is Professor at the Fenner School of Environment and Society at The Australian National University. Trained as a historian of science, Robin is highly regarded for her interdisciplinary work at the intersections of cultural and social history and the sciences of the environment. While her research has focused on Australia, she is regarded as an outstanding international environmental historian and a pioneer in the field of environmental humanities. Several of her books have been awarded prizes. Robin has held visiting positions at leading European and American institutions, and is currently Guest Professor at the Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm.

Horst Ruthrof

Horst Ruthrof is considered one of Australia’s leading literary theorists and philosophers of language, whose work ranges from the study of narrative form and the phenomenology of literature to more recent accounts of the corporeal basis of semantics. Ruthrof is renowned for the interdisciplinary nature of his work from literary studies, linguistics, film studies and philosophy. In addition to his own research career, Ruthrof established the Literature Program at Murdoch University in 1975 and has been a distinguished supervisor of postgraduate students, nurturing a generation of young academics and making a substantial contribution to the humanities in Australia.

Jeff Siegel

Jeff Siegel is Adjunct Professor in the School of Behavioural, Cognitive and Social Sciences at the University of New England. He has more than 25 years’ experience teaching in Australia, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu and Hawai‘i, and is one of the worldwide leading figures in pidgin and creole studies and second language acquisition research. He has made influential scholarly contributions to three areas of linguistics: language contact (especially the formation of pidgins, creoles, koines and new dialects); second language and second dialect acquisition; and language description. Siegel is one of the most prominent scholars working in the field of English varieties studies. He was founding Director of the Charlene Sato Center for Pidgin, Creole and Dialect Studies at the University of Hawai‘i.

Peta Tait

Peta Tait is Professor of Theatre and Drama in the School of Humanities at La Trobe University. She has achieved international recognition for her work in performance scholarship within a socio-historical context and in relation to film and other texts in cultural studies and its theory more broadly, and her analyses of dramatic literature and theatre. She is at the forefront of the field of performance studies in Australia and internationally, and her scholarship engages interdisciplinary approaches to performance studies and body-based art forms, and the analysis of theatrical languages of emotion. Tait is also a successful playwright, having written seven produced plays and three contemporary performances.

New Honorary Fellows

The Academy is also delighted to announce the election of 8 new Honorary Fellows. Honorary Fellows are distinguished public figures who advocate for the humanities, practitioners of the arts, overseas scholars in the humanities who have a close association with Australia, or Australian-based scholars who have made substantial contributions to the humanities throughout their careers.

The 2013 Honorary Fellows are:

Paul Brunton OAM

Paul Brunton is Emeritus Curator of the Mitchell Library at the State Library of New South Wales, where he has played a key role in the development of the library’s manuscript and rare book holdings. He has brought to the task an eye for innovation, with the development of new forms of databases of manuscript holdings, innovative forms of fund-raising, and the establishment of an oral history programme. Aside from the development of the Library’s own collections, Brunton has also curated several of the Library’s major exhibitions, serving to promote greater public awareness of the Library’s riches and resources. In addition, Brunton has worked to benefit the scholarly community by publishing works that make available rare source material held by the Library.

Ross Burns

Ross Burns was a career officer of the Department of Foreign Affairs for 37 years until his retirement in 2003. In that time he had a range of overseas postings particularly in the Middle East, Africa and Europe. He was Ambassador to Syria and Lebanon (based in Damascus) from 1984–87. He was subsequently Ambassador to South Africa (1992–95), Greece (1998–2001) and Israel (2001–03). During his postings to Syria, Israel and Greece he gave considerable and unstinting support to Australian academics and students, especially archaeologists, historians and art historians working in these countries. In Australia, Dr Burns has sought to use public speaking and lectures as a way of conveying a more accurate understanding of the Arab and Islamic world and its complex history.

Dr Burns is also a scholar of international repute on the history and archaeology of Greco-Roman and Early Islamic Syria. His first book, Monuments of Syria: A Historical Guide (1992), now in its third edition (2009), is considered the best guide for scholars and travellers alike, and is ranked as one of the best guides ever written for any country in the Levant.

Rosalind Halton

Rosalind Halton is a musician and researcher at the Humanities Research Institute at the University of Newcastle. She specialises in bringing to performance little-known and often previously unheard works from the vast catalogue of cantatas and serenatas by Italian Baroque composer Alessandro Scarlatti (1660–1725). As well as producing scholarly editions and recordings, she has published papers on subjects such as performance style, musical structure and imagery, arising from her research into primary sources of Scarlatti’s music.

Halton is an accomplished harpsichord player and a foundation member of the baroque ensemble Chacona. Her recorded works include several releases through ABC Classics, including her seminal CD of Scarlatti cantatas and serenatas. Her double sole CD The French Harpsichord received a Soundscapes recording award in 1997 for best instrumental/chamber recording produced in Australia. She has also performed with many leading ensembles, including the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Sydney Philharmonia and Sydney Symphony Orchestra.

David Marr

David Marr’s many contributions as a journalist, author and commentator for over forty years have established him as one of Australia’s leading public intellectuals. During the 1970s he wrote for The Bulletin and The National Times, editing the latter from 1981–2. Until his recent retirement from the post, Marr was for many years a senior feature writer for the Sydney Morning Herald. He continues to write for The Guardian Australia and The Monthly.

As an author, Marr has written several award winning books but is best known for his third book, Patrick White: A Life (1991). It was a best seller in Australia and won all the major Australian literary awards for Non-Fiction, including those given by the South Australian Festival, the Victorian and New South Wales Premiers, the National Book Council and The Age. Marr has also written several highly acclaimed books and essays on Australian politics, including Dark Victory (2004) an account of the Tampa incident and the subsequent re-election of the Howard government, and a series of Quarterly Essays on the decline of public debate under Howard, on Kevin Rudd and most recently on Tony Abbott and George Pell.

In 2009 David Marr was awarded the Sydney PEN Keneally Award for his contribution to the promotion of freedom of speech and international understanding.

Philip Payton

Philip Payton is Director of the Institute of Cornish Studies and Professor of Cornish and Australian Studies at the University of Exeter. He is also an Adjunct Professor of History at Flinders University, Adelaide. Professor Payton is widely considered to be the leading specialist in Cornish emigration history, especially that of Cornish emigrants to Australia. He has also made a significant contribution to Cornish biographical studies, and two important biographies include John Betjeman and Cornwall: ‘The Celebrated Cornish Nationalist’ (2010) and A.L. Rowse and Cornwall: A Paradoxical Patriot (2005). Payton has edited the journal Cornish Studies for 21 years and was also editor of Australian Studies from 2008 to 2010, and remains on the Editorial Board.

Andrew Sayers AM

Andrew Sayers is an eminent art historian and museum director. As Inaugural Director of the National Portrait Gallery (NPG), a position he held for 12 years (1998–2010), Sayers developed the NPG into a significant national institution and collection. Until his recent retirement, he was Director of the National Museum of Australia (2010–13) where he made a significant contribution towards greater understanding of the Australian past.

Over the years, Sayers has written extensively on the history of Australian art. His scholarly works include Drawing in Australia: Drawings, Water Colours, Pastels and Collages from the 1770s to the 1980s (1989); Sidney Nolan: The Ned Kelly Story (1994); Aboriginal Artists of the Nineteenth Century (1994) and the Australian Art volume in the Oxford History of Art (2001). Sayers’ publication on Indigenous drawing is considered one of the most original contributions to Australian art history ever conceived, based on many years research in archives, libraries, museums and private collections.

In 2010 Andrew Sayers was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia for his service to arts administration, particularly as the Director of the National Portrait Gallery, and to the promotion of Australian portraiture.

Andrew Stewart

Andrew Stewart is the Nicholas C. Petris Professor of Greek Studies and Professor of Ancient Mediterranean Art and Archaeology at the University of California, Berkley. Professor Stewart is a highly distinguished researcher and teacher in the field of ancient Greek art and is considered to be one of the world’s leading authorities on the subjects of Classical and Hellenistic Greek sculpture. His interests focus particularly on the body in art and thought; portraiture and personhood in ancient Greece; Greek and Roman attitudes to and writing on Greek art; the Greeks in the East before and after Alexander; and the Renaissance and later reception of ancient sculpture.

Stewart has pursued close ties with Australia (and Australasia) since 1972 when he was appointed Lecturer in the University of Otago, later serving as the visiting Distinguished Professor for the Australian Archaeological Institute at Athens and in 2013 he delivered the Academy’s A. D. Trendall Lecture (advancing Classical Studies in Australia).

Alexandra Walsham

Alexandra Walsham is Professor of Modern History at the University of Cambridge and Fellow of Trinity College. She is considered to be one of the leading scholars in the religious and cultural history of early modern Britain, focusing on the immediate impact and long-term repercussions of the Protestant and Catholic Reformations set within their European context. She has published extensively on a range of themes, including post-Reformation Roman Catholicism; religious tolerance and intolerance between 1500 and 1700; the history of the book, the advent of printing, and the interconnections between oral, visual and written culture; religion and the landscape.

A graduate of The University of Melbourne, Walsham continues to maintain close connections with Australian researchers, returning regularly to speak at conferences and other events, and frequently mentors Australian postgraduate students.
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