Congratulations to Geraldine Fela, a 2017 ANU History Honours graduate on winning the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives’ Honours Thesis Prize for 2016/2017 for her study of nurses during the AIDS crisis: ‘Critical Care: Nurses, their unions and the AIDS crisis’. One of the judges, Associate Professor Noah Riseman, noted:
"This is the first scholarly study of Australian nursing during the AIDS epidemic. Drawing on oral history interviews, media reports and the records of nursing unions, the thesis shows the ways that the rise of nursing unionism intersected with concerns about care for AIDS patients. It was the activism of nurses, sometimes individuals, sometimes at the union level, who influenced the adoption of universal precautions and who pushed for care, rather than stigmatisation, of AIDS patients. The thesis draws on a significant body of secondary sources on nursing, labour. LGBTQI and HIV/AIDS history. In doing so, it shows the ways different fields of history can inform each other."
We are fortunate in our students: this is the second occasion on which one of our Honours students has won this prize, the previous winner being Jaan Butler. Congratulations to Geraldine, who is now undertaking a PhD at Monash, where she is building on the marvellous work she completed with us in her Honours year. And my thanks for Dr Cheryl Ware for her contributions to Geraldine’s supervision in 2017.
Further details may be found at: