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2020 Undergraduate Awards
Two students from our courses Convicts and Setters and Legends and Life Stories, both convened by Professor Angela Woollacott and tutored by Jess Urwin, have been recognised in the 2020 Undergraduate Awards, a major international competition for university students. Hector Warren Fraser was Highly Commended in the History category. Eleanor Foster was the Regional Winner of the History category for her essay, and was highly commended for another. Eleanor, a Bachelor of Philosophy student, will be doing Honours next year with Maria Nugent and she is on the editorial board of the ANU Historical Journal II. Both students are preparing their essays for publication in refereed journals. Their successes in the Dublin-based Undergraduate Awards follow those of other ANU History students who have enjoyed success in this competition in previous years.
2020 Patricia Grimshaw Prize
Maria Nugent, of the School of History, along with her co-author Gaye Sculthorpe, has won the 2020 Patricia Grimshaw Prize, which is awarded for an article published in Australian Historical Studies ‘that makes the most significant contribution to our understanding of Australian history’. The judges’ report described the article as follows: ‘This engaging article traces the afterlives of an Aboriginal shield purported to have been used at the 1770 encounter between Aboriginal people and Captain Cook at Botany Bay, subsequently collected by Cook, and now held by the British Museum. Rather than issues of provenance, the authors focus on this shield’s long history of exhibition and interpretation, tracing the ways in which it has inspired projects to recast the fraught history of foundational encounter. As an object biography, the article explores the ways in which historical collecting practices as well as contemporary politics shape meaning, and the authors display an impressive command of multidisciplinary techniques in their quest to tell a national story from a single object. In unpacking the shield’s meanings as an historically ‘loaded’ object, this nuanced study offers timely and thoughtful insight into the relationship between colonial contact history, material culture, and the politics of reconciliation’. The School of History also congratulates Ben Huf, our PhD student graduate, whose article ‘The Capitalist in Colonial History: Investment, Accumulation and Credit-Money in NSW’, based on his doctoral work under the supervision of Nicholas Brown, was also shortlisted for this award.