ALLAN MARTIN 2016 PUBLIC LECTURE Child Refugees and Australian Internationalism: Past, Present, Future

The issue of child refugees is a timely, relevant and highly significant one. The treatment and experience of child refugees continues to be an ongoing concern and the focus of national and international debates.
Australia has played a major role internationally in offering humanitarian assistance to child refugees over several decades. This lecture will consider Australia’s participation on this issue through an analysis of the history of assisting, accepting or rejecting child refugees and the institutions and organisations that have played a role in these processes. This knowledge is pertinent as it enables an exploration of the veracity of the general perception that Australians today are more enlightened with respect to humanitarian issues regarding child refugees than those of the past. An analysis of past histories can contextualise and inform current policies and practices and allow us to examine Australia’s current international role on refugee and migration issues more broadly.

Professor Joy Damousi is Professor of History in the School of Historical and Philosophical Studies, University of Melbourne. She is the author of numerous books which include The Labour of Loss: Mourning, Memory and Wartime Bereavement in Australia (Cambridge, 1999); Living with the Aftermath: Trauma, Nostalgia and Grief in Post-war Australia (Cambridge, 2001); Freud in the Antipodes: A Cultural History of Psychoanalysis in Australia (UNSW Press, 2005; winner of the Ernest Scott Prize) and Colonial Voices: A Cultural History of English in Australia 1840-1940 (Cambridge 2010). With Philip Dwyer she is the general editor of a four volume World History of Violence, due to be published by Cambridge University Press in 2017. She is also currently the editor of the History series for Melbourne University Press. Her current research includes war, trauma and post-war Greek migration to Australia; sound and the two world wars; and child refugees and war.

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Date & time

Tue 03 May 2016, 6.15–8.30pm


Coombs Lecture Theatre, Fellows Road, ANU


School of History


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