Tales of trouble-making, Newcastle style

Posted: 03/04/2011 in meetings, presentations, reports

Dr James Bennett at the April Meeting (Photo: G. Heathcote)

Historians and researchers at the University of Newcastle are looking for contributors to a new “Radical Newcastle” project launched in December by the University’s Humanities Research Institute.

A number of books have been published over the past decade on the radical histories of some of Australia’s big cities: Radical Melbourne, Radical Brisbane and, last year, Radical Sydney.

Senior Lecturer at the School of Humanities and Social Science, and one of the project’s coordinators, Dr James Bennett said that “Radical Newcastle” would be the first such project on a regional Australian city, and one that would reflect a very different radical heritage from Australia’s major metropolitan centres.

“We believe that a collaborative anthology on the radical past and present of Newcastle has the potential to recover some important aspects of the city’s history, in the process developing valuable partnerships with the local community” he said.

The “Radical Newcastle” project is looking for those obscure and untold stories that have shaped the city’s character, its cultural life and institutions.

Director of the Humanities Research Institute, Professor Hugh Craig, says “This is an exciting project for the Hunter Region – it will reclaim some of our local history and help us understand how people power has worked in the past to get things done. It should make a stimulating, interesting read as well, putting some major events into perspective.”
The Humanities Research Institute was formed in 2010 to champion research in the humanities at the University of Newcastle. It fosters research through sponsored research programmes, forging links and alliances within and beyond the University.

People were invited to participate in a gathering to discuss Radical Newcastle, held in the Auchmuty Library Video Conferencing Room (L326) on 1 April 2011, 1-3 pm.

Meeting participants (Photo: G. Heathcote)

At the session Dr James Bennett introduced the Radical Newcastle Project with a Radical  Newcastle  Powerpoint Presentation  – 1 April 2011.  A presentation on the recently digitised Josiah Cocking Papers was also made by Gionni Di Gravio. The Session was then opened to the participants to discuss and network.

At the end of the session, Dr Nancy Cushing asked participants to fill out a Radical Newcastle Project commitment form outlining the topics they wished to write on. These can be returned to her directly at nancy.cushing@newcastle.edu.au or to radicalnewcastle@gmail.com.



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