Skip navigation
The Australian National University

True Biographies of Nations? Exploring the Cultural Journeys of Dictionaries of National Biography Canberra

Date and time

Thursday, June 30, 2016 - 17:00 - Saturday, July 2, 2016 - 15:00

Venue

National Library of Australia - Parkes Place West, Canberra, ACT 2600

Stephen Baxter, The Australian Crowd, 2014

In 2004, the chairman of the supervisory committee of the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Keith Thomas, concluded the Leslie Stephen Special Lecture by expressing his hope that the genre of the biographical dictionary would develop into a “database so vast as to be a true national biography”. Given that 2016 is the 50th anniversary of the publication of the first volume of the Australian Dictionary of Biography, it is timely to consider the cultural journey that dictionaries of biography have taken and assess the extent to which they are developing into “true” national biographies.

The conference will be held over three days, beginning with a reception on Thursday, 30 June, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the publication of volume one of the Australian Dictionary of Biography. The following two days will consist of papers and panels relating to national dictionary projects.

Venues: Australian National University, Acton, and National Library of Australia, Parkes Place, Canberra

Dates: 30 June-2 July 2016

Reception: 30 June, FREE


Conference: 1-2 July, Cost $120 ($70 concession: students and pensioners); Daily rate $60 ($35 concession: students and pensioners)

Click here to register at Eventbrite for the RECEPTION
Click here to register at Eventbrite for the CONFERENCE

* Please note you must register for the reception and conference separately.
Enquiries: ncb@anu.edu.au or (02) 6125 2676

 

Draft Conference program

Thursday 30 June: Reception: Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the publication of the first volume of the ADB

Venue: Great Hall, University House, Australian National University
Time: 5-8pm

Sir Robert Menzies, a great supporter of the ADB, was invited to launch its first volume in 1966 at University House. We are returning to this venue to celebrate the 50th anniversary of that event.

5.30pm Paul House (Ngambri-Ngurmal and Ngunnawal-Wallabollooa), welcome to country and musical performance on the didgeridoo

5.50pm speeches: guest of honour TBA


Friday 1 July: State of the Art: Opportunities to Transform National Dictionaries of Biography

Venue: National Library of Australia, Parkes Place, Parliamentary Triangle, Canberra


8.30-9.00 Registration


9.00-9.30 NLA & ANU welcomes

NLA welcome: Anne-Marie Schwirtlich, Director-General

ANU welcome: TBA


9.30-11.00 Using Lives? Utilizing the rich databases we are creating

Prof. Melanie Nolan (ADB & ANU), ‘Using Lives: the ADB and its related corpora’

Christine Fernon and Scott Yeadon (ADB, ANU), ‘NCB/ADB websites: The value of value adding’

Chair: Dr Malcolm Allbrook


11.00-11.30  Morning Tea


11.30-1.00 Global biography? The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, big data and transnational networks

Dr Philip Carter (ODNB and Oxford University), ‘What is national biography for? Past, Present and Future Journeys’

Prof. Sir David Cannadine (ODNB and Princeton University), ‘Oxford in the World: The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography and Global Biography’


1.00-2.00 Exhibition of biographical dictionaries


2.00-3.30 Bringing the nation back in? A debate on the contemporary role of national dictionary projects

Em. Prof. Jock Phillips, Te Ara: The Encyclopedia of New Zealand

TBA, A Dictionary of Indigenous Australian Biography

Kent Fitch, computing and database specialist


3.30-4.00 Afternoon Tea


4.00-5.30 Panel discussion: Revising dictionaries

Prof. Susan Ware (American National Biography & Harvard), ‘Why Gender Matters: Fostering Diversity in the American National Biography’

Turlough O'Riordan (Dictionary of Irish Biography & Royal Irish Academy) ‘The Irish World: How to revise a long-standing dictionary project’

Prof. Elizabeth Ewan (Biographical Dictionary of Scottish Women & University of Guelph) ‘Taking the Dictionary of Scottish women online’

Chair: Prof. Ira Nadel (former editor Dictionary of Literary Biography, University of British Columbia)


Saturday 2 July: Challenges Facing Digital
Biographical Dictionary Projects

Venue: National Library of Australia Parkes Place, Parliamentary Triangle, Canberra


8.30-9.00 Registration


9.00-11.00 Building on the Past: Looking to the Future, Roundtable on Dictionary resources within the nation

Moderator: Dr Karen Fox (ADB, ANU): Setting the scene: History of Australasian biographical dictionaries and the issues they face

Kerry Kilner, University of Queensland (AustLit)

TBA, Australian Women’s Register

TBA, Dictionary of the Senate

Dr Malcolm Allbrook, Dictionary of Indigenous Biography

Ass. Prof. Gavan McCarthy, eScholarship Research Centre (Encyclopedia of Australian Science)


11.00-11.30  Morning Tea


11.30-12.30 Publishing in the Digital Age: privacy and access, rights

Dr Philip Carter (ODNB)

Prof. Melanie Nolan (ADB)

Prof. Susan Ware (ANB)

Followed by general questions from the audience.


12.30-1.30 Lunch


1.30-3.00 Beyond the Nation: Writing a Dictionary of World Biography

Barry Jones, AC FAA FACE FAHA FASSA FTSE, in conversation with Prof. Sir David Cannadine


3.00 Conference End
 

 

Updated: 20 July 2017/ Responsible Officer:  Head of School / Page Contact:  Web Publisher