Alfred Deakin Research Institute

Contemporary Histories

Contemporary Histories refers to the history that is still 'with us', or the unfinished business of the past. This means that we are focused primarily, but not exclusively, on twentieth century history, and we are interested especially in historical episodes, life stories and interpretations that reverberate in the present, for public debate and policy. What, for example, are some of today's legacies of colonial history in the Pacific? How are wars, acts of rebellion, stories of migration remembered in ways that have popular appeal or political implications? How have political contests changed since the 1960s? And how do stories from the frontier of white settler encounters with Australian Aborigines assist in understanding and reconciliation today?

We draw especially on Deakin's teaching and research strengths in histories of war and peace, modernisation and social change, frontier encounters, colonialism and decolonisation, nationalism and internationalism, as relating to Australia and the Pacific, the United States, France and Germany, and modern world history in general. We also draw on other disciplines, acknowledging that lived history is felt and investigated in multiple ways.

We hold regular seminars on contemporary histories, supervise honours and doctoral students, and encourage history major internships with our group. We support the work of the Australian Policy and History network, and we promote the study of contemporary histories and collaborate with groups in Australia and overseas.

Staff include:

* Affiliate member

Read about our current research projects

Deakin University acknowledges the traditional land owners of present campus sites.

3rd July 2012