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Half the Perfect World Non-Fiction Winner of Prime Minister's Literary Awards


Half the Perfect World shortlisted for Prime Minister's Literary Awards


Fountain of Public Prosperity wins 2019 Christian Book of the Year Award

Monash University Publishing Highlights 2018The Fountain of Public Prosperity: Evangelical Christians in Australian History 1740–1914 by Stuart Piggin and Robert Linder is the 2019 Australian Christian Book of the Year.

The award was accepted by Stuart Piggin, Conjoint Associate Professor of History at Macquarie University, and David Groenewegen from Monash University Publishing at the annual awards ceremony in Melbourne on Thursday 15 August.

Judges described the book as “a seminal and epic contribution to Australian Christian history, thoroughly researched, deeply insightful and a pleasure to read.” They noted the book’s critical function in correcting the general ignorance of the enormous influence of evangelical Christians in the development of Australia.

 “It is a challenge for the historian to make visible that which has long been invisible. Australia’s Christian heritage has not so much been lost as never found. Evangelicals’ prescription for a Christian civilisation promoted policies where justice, compassion and prosperity for all flourished, and made a major contribution to the development of the Australia we know today. Understanding the fountain from which our present prosperity flows is the first step in reimagining a future for Australia.”

 “This gripping and impressively researched book puts evangelical Christianity at the centre of the Australian story, from the eighteenth century through to World War I. It begins by recounting the friendship between a First Fleet officer, Lieutenant Dawes, and some of the Indigenous Eora. It goes on to introduce female suffragists and missionary workers, Chinese evangelists and moral reformers—a wide range of people who imagined their community and its future through the eyes of faith. Professors Piggin and Linder have devoted decades to unearthing the story of ‘Christlike citizenship’ in Australia, and the result is a fluent work of national and international importance. Offering a radical revision of some of the received wisdom about our nation, it can be read from cover to cover, enjoyed in sections and revisited as a reference. A landmark account of the enormous influence of evangelicals in shaping modern Australia.”


The creative lives of George Johnston and Charmian Clift to be celebrated in new film

Monash University Publishing Highlights 2018Monash University Publishing and Cascade Films announce the purchase by Cascade Films of film rights for the book Half the Perfect World: Writers, Dreamers and Drifters on Hydra, 1955–1964, by Paul Genoni and Tanya Dalziell, published by Monash University Publishing.

Half the Perfect World tells the story of George Johnston, Charmian Clift, Leonard Cohen, Marianne Ihlen and a host of other writers and artists searching, on an idyllic Greek isle, for a more stimulating and real existence than the treadmill of ordinary life in their home countries could provide.

The works they created, and how they loved and fought in the making of them, have passed into legend for appreciators of literature, music and art around the world, and especially in Australia.

Cascade Films is undertaking this project with a first-rate team of passionate filmmakers, spearheaded by acclaimed writer for the screen Andrew Knight (Hacksaw Ridge, Rake, Jack Irish, The Water Diviner), director Nadia Tass (Malcolm, Pure Luck, Amy, Matching Jack) and producers David Parker (Malcolm, The Big Steal, Fatal Honeymoon) and Carmel Meiklejohn (Fatal Honeymoon).

‘I have been following the Johnson and Clift story for many years and when Andrew Knight brought this book into Cascade Films it was clear to us that this biography is the way into the complex world of these two remarkable lives.’ Nadia Tass, Director.

‘Paul and Tanya have done a wonderful job in unveiling the world of this important group of artists, who in some ways remain an inspiration, and we are thrilled to have now partnered with such a well credentialed and talented group of film makers.’ Dr Nathan Hollier, Director, Monash University Publishing.

Enquiries to Carmel Meiklejohn at Cascade: +61 3 9646 4022 or Sarah Cannon, Senior Marketing Coordinator at Monash University Publishing: +61 03 9905 0526


Congratulations Lynette Russell

Congratulations to our Advisory Committee Chair Professor Lynette Russell on being made a Member of the Order of Australia in the 2019 Australia Day Honours list this year! Richly deserved.


Handful of Sand shortlisted for PM's Book Prize

This week, Charlie Ward's A Handful of Sand: The Gurindji Struggle, After the Walk-off was named on the shortlist for the 2017 Prime Minister's Literary Award (Prize for Australian History), alongside works by Josephine Bastian, Neil McDonald, John Murphy and Elizabeth Tynan. Earlier in the year, Ward's book was also shortlisted for the Northern Territory Chief Minister’s History Book Award.

The book has already attracted universal praise, with Ted Egan, AO describing it as 'The definitive work on the Walk-off and the Gurindji struggle.'

Winners will be announced in the coming weeks. In the meantime, congratulations and best of luck to Charlie from us at Monash University Publishing.


Monash University Publishing Highlights 2018

Monash University Publishing Highlights 2018We are delighted to bring to your attention a handful of our 2018 books – titles we feel deserve a wide audience and should be of interest to your readers. We encourage you to download a copy of our 2018 highlights package to see what's in store. Proofs are available now for some, while others will be available 3-4 months ahead of publication. As you know some publication dates may change slightly. If you would like to discuss any of these – proofs, feature reviews, extracts, interviews – please contact me.

All the best,

Sarah Cannon

Tel (03) 9905 0526


Tom Griffith's launches Slow Catastrophes

Monash University Publishing Director Nathan Hollier, author Rebbeca Jones and launcher Tom Griffiths at the launch of Slow Catastrophes.

Slow Catastrophes by Rebecca Jones was launched to a packed house at Readings Carlton on Thursday, 17 August. The full launch speech is online now.

Slow Catastrophes Book Launch, Readings Carlton, 17 August

Tom Griffiths will launch Rebecca Jones’s Slow Catastrophes, a book that provides us with vital resources to face our ecological future. This work shares the histories of eight farming families, stretching from the 1870s to the 1950s, with a focus on private lives and inner thoughts, revealed by personal diaries.

6.00 for 6.30pm, 17 August 2017. Venue: Readings Bookshop Carlton. Please rsvp to



Director's Letter

The big news for us this week is Charlie Ward’s shortlisting for the Chief Minister’s NT History Award. I’m hoping this will be the first of more prize shortlistings for this book on the Gurindji struggle after the famous ‘walk-off’. For those of us wanting to understand the past and present challenges for Australia’s Indigenous communities; this is a must-read.

In the Weekend Australian (3–4 Jun) Bruce Grant’s Subtle Moments: Scenes on Life’s Journey was reviewed by Barry Oakley. Barry noted ‘the lucidity of the writing and the acuity of many of its judgments’ though thought the work over long. His own memoirs, if memory serves, were called ‘minitudes’ (and the reviewer for Overland, that I was editing then, unkindly said something along the lines of this being an appropriately humble title for them).

John Rickard reviewed Race Mathews’ Of Labour and Liberty in the latest Australian Book Review in a typically considerate, learned and measured piece: ‘Mathews is in effect urging Catholics to reclaim their heritage and recognise that distributism might help deal with increasing inequality’.

John, I’m proud to say, is also one of our authors and his new edition of Australia: A Cultural History, we’ll be releasing in November. So there was a hint of Davisian ‘gangland’ about it but such networks can be hard to unravel. Mark himself (Davis that is) has provided a ‘shout’ for Kath Wilson’s Tinkering: Australians Reinvent DIY Culture, an October release for us.

Davis says: 'A length of fencing wire, in my farmboy childhood, could fix just about anything. This book has similar miraculous powers. It mixes sociology, science, economics, philosophy, anthropology and good old tinkerer know-how into an illuminating analysis of the clash between old and new ways of work. Full of fascinating insights and fascinating people, this book is a reminder that work is never just work, and can still have soul.'

The Monash UP team and I are really excited for this book and are hoping for big things from it. Kath is such a stylish writer and she’s tapping here into cultural developments that are as fascinating as they are strongly emergent.

On Tuesday night (6 June) I attended the presentation by our authors Al Thomson and Anisa Puri [see Australian Lives: An Intimate History] on ‘making digital aural history’ at the Old Treasury Building in Spring Street here in Melbourne. Al and Anisa discussed the intellectual, editorial (eight stages!), logistical and technological challenges of producing such a major work of oral history, and one that combines the written and spoken ‘texts’ in a way that, so far as the authors are aware, hasn’t been done before. Audience members were shown the finalised, transcribed interviews while also listening along to the e version. As one attendee noted, it is much easier to get a feel for a speaker’s irony and humour while listening to her than from the page.

Above: Presentation Chair Professor Christina Twomey, Dr Anisa Puri and Professor Alistair Thomson

As an historical resource for the future this work will be hard to top. I think a key audience for it should be visitors to Australia.

The intrepid Tim Fischer spoke at the United Services Club in Brisbane last Friday (2nd) on his book on John Monash. Surprise, surprise ... he sold more copies of the book than the organisers expected. That is a certainty to rank with death and taxes.

Next Friday (16th) I’m at the Whitlam Institute in Parramatta for the Sydney launch of Race Mathews’ Of Labour and Liberty. Race will be in conversation with Bishop Vincent Long. All are welcome.

Poor Race is travelling to Sydney mid-week to do his Late Night Live interview with Phillip Adams, then back to Melbourne and to Sydney again on the Friday, but he is nothing if not a pro. (I’m trying to learn from him in that respect.) 

In Sydney Clare Monagle the historian (at Macquarie University) is kindly MC’ing our Saturday (17th Jun) launch of Australian Lives at Gleebooks in Sydney, with Lisa Murray, Sydney’s City Historian. I’m disappointed to be missing it but have to be back for the Lit Fest in the greatest suburb in the universe.

When I thought we should try to get Series Editors for the press I asked myself ‘Who would be doing the most interesting stuff?’ And Clinton Fernandes was the first person who came to mind. I was right and he’s been great for us with the Investigating Power series. Here’s a new piece from him on Espionage Against East Timor and the need for Parliamentary Oversight.


Book Launch and Forum

The State of Being Equal: International Law in the Age of Trump

When: Tuesday 11 April 2017, 6:30pm
Where: Readings, 309 Lygon Stree, Carlton, Victoria
Cost: Free event, but due to limited space please book

Readings are excited to introduce a new event series in 2017. The State of Being Equal is a forum intended to make sure we trump Trump politics by exploring how society can be more equitable and just, rather than divisive and bellicose. Each event in the series will examine a new title that is relevant to global and sexual politics.

In Who’s Afraid of International Law? noted authorities explore ways in which international law constitutes a certain way of talking and being – one that might have both ameliorative and malign effects. Editors Raimond Gaita and Gerry Simpson will discuss the ideas raised in the book with feminist international law scholar Hilary Charlesworth.

This is a free event, but please book here.


Campaign aims to give Monash highest army rank a century later

Monash's Our author Tim Fischer, whose book Maestro John Monash has put the case for the posthumous promotion of Monash to the rank of Field Marshal, is continuing this campaign with the help of the Honourable Josh Frydenberg MP.



Digital Divas wins national prize

Our new title about changing the attitudes of school girls towards IT has won the 2016 Leonie Warne Prize. The book, Digital Divas: Putting the Wow into Computing for Girls, is based on a successful Australian project which changed girls’ perceptions of IT careers using specifically designed classroom materials that were delivered in all-girl classes.

The Digital Divas project also improved the confidence of the girls who participated when it came to using computers. The project was conceived as a response to a downturn in girls studying IT at secondary school. Recent figures suggest that women only make up around 28% of the IT workforce in Australia.

Lead author, Adjunct Professor Julie Fisher, said that she and her colleagues were pleased to receive the award.

“It’s really important to recognise that there are ways to get more girls interested in IT. After all, it looks like more and more jobs will be technology-based in the future and we need to move towards gender equality in this area,” she said.

“There are so many fascinating avenues open to people who have good IT skills, from designing systems to improve healthcare, to social welfare and education - it’s not just about hardware and software, it’s about people too,” she added. Professor Fisher conducted the research with her colleagues Professor Helen Forgasz and Dr Amber McLeod from Monash University, along with Associate Professor Catherine Lang from La Trobe University and Associate Professor Annemieke Craig from Deakin University.

The Leonie Warne Prize for an Outstanding Publication in the Area of Women and IT was announced at this year's Australasian Conference on Information Systems. The prize is worth $1500 and recognises the best article published during the year in any outlet (book, book chapter, conference or journal). The electronic version of Digital Divas is currently available to download for free.


The Conscription Conflict and the Great War launch speeches by Bill Shorten and Luke Foley MP

The Conscription Conflict and the Great War by was successfully launched in Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra at the end of November with the help of official launchers the Hon Bill Shorten MP and Luke Foley MP.

Bill Shorten

Speaking in Melbourne, Bill Shorten said:

The Conscription Conflict tells a forgotten story, it fills a void in Australian history.  And – as the best writers of history do – the authors of this collection allow the protagonists to speak for themselves. The sound and fury of those times, the words that bounced off these very walls, still ring loudly in this book.

Read his full speech here.

Luke Foley

At the Sydney launch, Luke Foley said:

For Australians, a complete understanding of the Great War will only be gained by reading and thinking about the conscription debates, their outcomes and their meaning.

Read his full speech here.


How to Vote Progressive in Australia debate and launch photos

Photographs by Les Thomas

Nathan Hollier, Ellen Sandell (Greens), Sean Scalmer (ed), Andrew Giles MP (Labor), Dennis Altman (ed) and host Tracee Hutchison.

Sean Scalmer (ed), Ellen Sandell (Greens) and Andrew Giles MP (Labor).

Dennis Altman and Tracee Hutchison.

Sean Scalmer and Ellen Sandell.

Andrew Giles MP, Dennis Altman and Tracee Hutchison.

Nathan Hollier and Sean Scalmer.

Find out more about this title

Follow How to Vote Progressive on Facebook.


Monash University Publishing featured in Bookseller+Publisher

Monash University Publishing team, 2016Director Nathan Hollier spoke to Books+Publishing for their ‘small publisher spotlight’ series.





Ann Wigglesworth, author of Activism and Aid on On Line Opinion

An estimated ten thousand Timorese protesters besieged the Australian embassy in Dili on 22 March 2016 to protest Australia's refusal to negotiate with East Timor on a permanent sea boundary in the oil- and gas-rich Timor Sea.

The fledgling half-island nation asserts the vast majority of oil and gas reserves in the Timor Sea – worth about US$40 billion in royalties and tax alone – would lie in its territory if sea borders reflected the norms of the UN Convention of the Law of the Sea, a contention Australia rejects. Read more


Thriving societies produce great books – can Australia keep up?

How healthy is the bookselling and publishing industry in Australia? And what are the key reasons for this state of wellbeing (or illness)?

Monash University Publishing Director Nathan Hollier writes on the state of publishing in Australia on The Conversation.


Meredith Fletcher wins major book prize at Victorian Community History Awards 2015

Meredith Fletcher, winner of the major prize at the Victorian Community History Awards, for her biography of Jean Galbraith

Meredith Fletcher's Jean Galbraith: Writer in the Valley has just won the main prize at the Victorian Community History Awards 2015 . The $5000 award recognises the most outstanding community history project submitted in any category.

Jean Galbraith: Writer in the Valley tells the story of one of Australia’s most influential botanists and writers on nature, plants and gardens. Meredith Fletcher (pictured above with Monash University Publishing manager Nathan Hollier at the awards ceremony)  is a historian specialising in environmental, local and community history.

Zareh Ghazarian wins the Australian Prime Minister's Centre Fellowship for 2015-16

Dr Zareh GhazarianDr Zareh Ghazarian of the School of Social Sciences and author of The Making of a Party System has been awarded the Australian Prime Minister's Centre Fellowship for 2015-16.

The fellowship, established by the Commonwealth government, was awarded by the Australian Prime Ministers Centre within the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House. It aims to raise awareness of Australia’s prime ministers and to provide a national focus for research and scholarship in the field of prime ministerial studies.

As part of the fellowship, Dr Ghazarian will undertake a project that analyses the approaches of prime ministers in advancing their party’s policy agenda in parliament. The project will also examine the leadership of prime ministers in negotiating the passage of bills through the Senate since 1949.

Read more

The Hanged Man and the Body Thief officially launched

Alexandra Roginski's The Hanged Man and the Body Thief was launched to a full house at Readings Bookshop, Carlton on Monday, 29 June. Read Tom Griffiths' full launch speech below with photos by Dr Libby Robin.

Good evening ladies and gentlemen.  I acknowledge the Wurundjeri people and their elders past and present, on whose lands we meet, and I especially thank the traditional owners of the Wonnarua nation who have travelled here to be with us – Tom Millar and James Wilson Millar – and also Brad Welsh from the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage.  Your presence here is so special and important, and we thank you profoundly.

The quest that is the origin of this book began in a museum cabinet.  That is where much wonderful research starts – for museums are dynamic, they are sites of renewal and discovery, they are not just an end-point, not just a final repository.  Museum collections are full of lives and stories – and they can surprise us.  That is one of the messages of this wonderful book.  Alex Roginski begins this story sitting in the research room of the Humanities Department of Museum Victoria with a manila folder in her hands.  It is a file with some scraps of information about a human skull in the museum’s collection, a skull with a barely legible label that appeared to read: ‘Jim Crow, Aboriginal … executed … land … capital offences.’  Alex has respectfully held that skull in her hands too, searching for signs of its identity.  It was her responsibility, her appointed task, to read the skull – and her assignment led her to people in earlier times who also read skulls, but for different purposes.  It was her burden to share that peculiar role with them.  For the skull in the museum could only be repatriated if the origins and cultural affiliation of the remains could be discovered.  That was Alex’s task; that was her quest.  A skull is an object that is so intensely and intimately personal that it is not an object.  Yet a skull is also bare bone, a material relic so stripped of individuality that it represents our physical humanity at its most basic and universal.  The skull seems to be the repository of who we are; it is the site of our being and personality: the head, the face, the brain.  Yet bone is ultimately just bone.  How do we read a skull for its cultural history, and how do we find the people and country it came from?  What life had lived within the skull?  Who was Jim Crow?  How do you, as Alex puts it, ‘breathe life into the skull to try to make him into a human being again’?

Searching for Jim Crow is what this book is about, and along the way we are introduced to three compelling people.  The first, of course, is Jim Crow himself.  His death and protracted earthly afterlife were more public than his brief existence.  Like many Aboriginal people on the pastoral frontier, he inhabited the margins of documented life and perhaps he intended it that way.  He is only caught in the settler record by the institutions of prosecution and punishment.  He was a slight Aboriginal man of about 25 years who came from the district of Maitland in New South Wales.  We don’t know his real Aboriginal name, and only a few of his utterances were recorded, all under the stress of prosecution.  On 24 January 1860 at about 11 am, Jim Crow visited a farmhouse in a township near Dungog and asked for water.  Jane Delanthy was at home, and she did not have water, but offered him coffee instead.  She was pregnant and she was at home alone with a young child while her husband was away working at the threshing machine for the day.  While Jim Crow sat on a stool and drank coffee, she made conversation.  What then happened was contested at trial and ended with them both running away in different directions.  Jane Delanthy accused Jim Crow of rape; Crow pleaded not guilty.  The jury found Jim Crow guilty but recommended him for mercy.  However Justice John Dickinson sentenced him to death.  In the book, Alex sifts the evidence and asks the fundamental question: Would Jim Crow have been convicted and executed were he not Aboriginal?  She finds that he would not have been.

The second compelling person to whom we are introduced in the book is a man named Alexander Hamilton, a morally ambiguous character.  We meet him in his early forties, six years after his arrival in the Australian colonies from Scotland, making a living as a phrenologist.  Phrenology was a popular nineteenth-century science that consisted of reading the shape of people’s heads to discern their moral and intellectual character.  Phrenologists were obsessed by race and criminality.  Alexander Hamilton was in the Maitland area giving public lectures that featured real human skulls, and he had been among the onlookers at Jim Crow’s execution within the sandstone walls of the Maitland Gaol.  Four months later, on a moonlit night, Hamilton attempted to have Crow’s head exhumed from its grave in St Peter’s Church of England Cemetery in East Maitland.  This immediately led to the prosecution of Hamilton for inciting grave-robbing, and thus the book’s second courtroom trial begins….  Alex, our author, issues a warning to her readers: ‘The challenge of dealing with loud historical figures such as Hamilton is that, no matter how gruesome their behavior, we start to warm to the very humanity of their voice.’  So we are introduced to a man who was bombastic, self-important, melodramatic, probably violent, sometimes charming, a showman.  Hamilton, as well as being a body thief, was an ardent campaigner for the abolition of capital punishment, and in 1880 pleaded for a reprieve for Ned Kelly.  In his 1860 trial for inciting grave-robbing, Hamilton, probably relishing the opportunity for performance, chose to defend himself in the court, and the jury took just 15 minutes to acquit him.  At some time in the next two years he returned to St Peter’s Church of England Cemetery, dug up Jim Crow’s body and removed the skull.  It then joined his collection of more than 50 skulls of known people and became a prop in his popular phrenological lectures.

The third enigmatic person to whom Alex introduces us in this book is Agnes Hamilton, Alexander’s third wife and, from 1884, his widow.  She was 34 years younger than him, a ‘soft beauty’ who was his amanuensis and secretary and, after Alexander’s death, possibly had a relationship and a child with the future Australian Prime Minister, George Reid.  In her final years Agnes also wrote biographies of the poet Henry Kendall.  In 1889, five years after Alexander’s death, she gave his collection of skulls and yellowed labels, together with some papers, to the National Museum of Victoria.  The donation, which Agnes hoped would memorialise the work of her late husband, was accepted by the museum and travelled by steamship from Sydney to Melbourne.  When the collection entered the museum, it continued to have a history of course, as Alex carefully explains – a contested history of custody, neglect, research and rediscovery that has led to us being here today.

I said that the book introduces us to three compelling people.  But there is a fourth.  There is a fourth figure whom we encounter in these pages and who becomes our guide.  It is Alex Roginski herself.  Her presence is quiet, subtle and respectful, but it is compelling too.  The extent to which an author declares herself in a work of history is always a delicate matter, and here it is beautifully done.  We meet her in the museum at the beginning of her research, she is our questing companion, thinking aloud, asking questions, inviting us to look over her shoulder as she reverently handles crania, examines labels, sifts data, walks in a cemetery, sits at her desk, and even as she googles.  Trove comes out of this book very well!  For the uninitiated, Trove is the digital marvel that, in response to a few key words, can dredge a century of newspaper reports and retrieve a forgotten fragment just for you – it replaces the days and weeks we historians used to spend spooling through newspaper microfilm.  It delivers power and responsibility into our hands with bewildering speed.  But the intellectual hard work remains to be done and still takes the same painstaking time.  Nothing can short-cut deep thinking; nothing can replace careful contextual analysis; nothing can supplant detailed cross-examination of evidence.  All of this is on show here too.  Alex is a master at extracting meaning from the tiniest detail and she writes with mischievous wit and literary flair.  We see Alex’s legal training employed in her sharp focus on the two trials at the heart of the book; we see her forensic eye scrutinising evidence, written and material; we come to share her heartfelt engagement with the moral challenges this research raises.  This is one of the benefits of readers meeting this fourth person.  Through her delicate presence in the book and her dialogue with the reader, Alex is able to negotiate the cultural sensitivities openly.  It is a way of dealing with the grisly and the macabre without sensationalising them.  She writes that ‘The cumulative impact of the Hamilton remains is sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes chilling.’  We are enabled to feel that impact too, and thus to share in the responsibility for what happens next. 

What happens next is ultimately what this book is about.  Alex finishes the book with the words: ‘I hope it will allow Jim Crow to return home.’  Tomorrow that historic opportunity will eventuate.  There will be a solemn handover ceremony at Melbourne Museum, and Jim Crow will travel again, this time with friends back to country.  There is justice to be done and there are reconnections to be made: of skull to person, of bone to life, of man to country.

Jim Crow’s story enables us to step back and consider how museums have been dealing with their colonial legacy and to reflect upon the vital, creative role of museums in our culture.  Over the last thirty years we have lived through a challenging and significant change in the relationship between museums and Indigenous peoples.  From the 1980s museums increasingly turned their attentions from past objects to present peoples, and Aboriginal studies resolutely crossed the great divide from science into the humanities.  Lindy Allen is a distinguished scholar from Museum Victoria who is here tonight, and she has observed that returning materials can sometimes be one of the most important things a museum does.  It’s true.  Our large museums now devote care and attention to the serious process of repatriation.  In her book, Alex acknowledges the inspiration of an essay called ‘Where are the stories?’, written by the National Museum of Australia curator and repatriation expert, Mike Pickering.  In that essay, Mike urges us to document and tell the stories of these grim museum collections, for it is the stories that ‘compel us to look at, and respect, the object on the table, the remains, as an individual.’  This is the large task to which Alex’s book contributes so thoughtfully: a revolution we are living through in our understanding of the Indigenous peoples of this country and their rights to history, heritage and land, a revolution in which historical research and museum collections are playing a vital role.

Over twenty years ago I was lucky enough to work for a while, as a guest researcher, in the same department of Museum Victoria where Alex began work on this book, and some of the same wonderful scholars and curators who helped me then have helped Alex now.  How lucky we all are that they are there still, such is their dedication to their museum and its collections.  They bring an immensely valuable continuity to this important work at a time of rapid change; they curate not only collections but also crucial institutional memory.  We all owe them a great debt for their sustained, sensitive work. 

Congratulations, Alex, on this powerful and important book, which is beautifully written, and that sparkles with intelligence and flair.  It is truly a gripping read, suffused with hauntings but also with hope, and one feels the power of the past in the present on every page.  It is my great pleasure to declare the book launched!

Tom Griffiths launching "The Hanged Man and the Body Thief"

Alexandra Roginski launching "The Hanged Man and the Body Thief"

Tom Griffiths at the launch of "The Hanged Man and the Body Thief"

A great turn-out at the launch of "The Hanged Man and the Body Thief"

Alexandra Roginksi, author of "The Hanged Man and the Body Thief"

Alexandra Roginksi, author of "The Hanged Man and the Body Thief"

The author's mother celebrating the launch of "The Hanged Man and the Body Thief"

Alexandra Roginksi and Tom Griffiths at the launch of "The Hanged Man and the Body Thief"

Events coming in 2015

Not just book launches, but a range of engaging, critical discussions are always being programmed by Monash University Publishing. Don't forget to check in on our Events page regularly.

Jon Faine and Richard Larkins

Monash University Publishing would like to invite you to

In Conversation with Professor Richard Larkins
Tuesday 31 March 2015 at the Monash University Club


Events – December 2014

Monash University Publishing would like to invite you to the following forthcoming events:

In Conversation with Author Andrew Scott
Wednesday 03 December 2014  (Sydney)


Events – October and November 2014

Monash University Publishing would like to invite you to the following forthcoming events:

Book Launch: Trendyville by Renate Howe, David Nichols and Graeme Davison
Thursday 16 October 2014  (Melbourne)

In Conversation with Author John Rickard
Friday 24 October 2014   (Melbourne)

In Conversation with Author Trevor Grant
Saturday 25 October 2014   (Sydney)

Book Launch: Maestro John Monash by Tim Fischer
Monday 10 November 2014   (Melbourne)

Book Launch: Northern Lights by Andrew Scott
Tuesday 25 November 2014   (Melbourne)

We hope you'll be able to join us at these events.


Book launch for David Syme: Man of The Age

Last night Emeritus Professor Graeme Davison launched Elizabeth Morrison's David Syme: Man of the Age at the State Library of Victoria.

Read the full launch speech.

David Syme book launch
L to R at the launch: Greg Hywood, Chief Executive and MD Fairfax Media; Emeritus Professor Graeme Davison, who launched the book; Sue Roberts, CEO and State Librarian, State Library of Victoria; our author Elizabeth Morrison; and the press Director, Nathan Hollier.


Upcoming events

An Imperial Affair: Portrait of an Australian Marriage
7 August at the National Library of Australia, Canberra
John Rickard and Frank Bongiorno will discuss the complexities of families and history.
For more information, see the NLA's event page.

David Syme: Man of the Age
12 August at the State Library of Victoria
To be launched by Graeme Davison.

Sri Lanka's Secrets: How the Rajapaksa Regime Gets Away with Murder
14 August at Readings Bookshop, Carlton
Author Trevor Grant in conversation with Julian Burnside AO, QC.


Recent events

Jean Galbraith: Writer in a Valley launch events

Jean Galbraith: Writer in a Valley was launched by Peter Cuffley at the opening of the Exhibition 'Jean Galbraith and Friends: A Shared Passion for Nature" at the Latrobe Regional Gallery on 26 July 2014. The exhibition, which is open until 21 September, explores Jean Galbraith's achievements and connection with her beloved valley and features the work of friends who shared her passion for nature: the botanical art of Betty Conabere and a collaboration with Edna Walling that has been hidden away in Jean Galbraith's papers until now.

Jean Galbraith: Writer in a Valley had a second launch event at Hill of Content Bookshop on 31 July 2014, with Jane Edmanson OAM as its launcher.

Anne Latreille, Jane Edmanson and Meredith Fletcher at the launch of Jean Galbraith: Writer in a Valley.
From left: Anne Latreille, Jane Edmanson OAM and Meredith Fletcher.

See the book's events page for more photos from this event.


David Syme

The Age competition

Win a dinner and newsroom tour with The Age editor-in-chief Andrew Holden, and the author of David Syme: Man of the Age, Elizabeth Morrison.
Competition closed 27 July 2014.


Book Launch Dare Me! by John Burbidge

Dare Me! The Life and Work of Gerald Glaskin was launched by Graham Willett, with Trisha Kotai-Ewers as MC and with special guest Rae Kean, on Monday 24 February at the Fellowship of Australian Writers WA Inc. (FAWWA) in Perth.

On Thursday 27 February, the book had a second launch event at Hares & Hyenas in Melbourne. A panel discussion featured author John Burbidge, historian and author Graham Willett, and lecturer and author Jeremy Fisher. The discussion focused on Glaskin's work, his legacies, and the Australian cultural landscape of his time.

Paul Genoni speaking at the Perth launch of John Burbidge's Dare Me

Paul Genoni addressing guests at the Perth launch of Dare Me! at FAWWA.
Photo courtesy of Bruce Robertson.

More photos from Dare Me! launch events


Book Launch Don't Mention the War
by Kevin Foster

Don't Mention the War was launched by Jeff Sparrow, editor of Overland, on 5 December 2013 at Avenue Bookstore Elsternwick.
Photos from the launch:

Kevin Foster and guests at the launch of Don't Mention the War

Guests at the launch of Don't Mention the War


Book Launch - The Market in Babies
by Marian Quartly, Shurlee Swain
and Denise Cuthbert

The Market in Babies: Stories of Australian Adoption was launched by Professor The Honourable Nahum Mushin on 28 November 2013 at RMIT University.

Read Professor Mushin's launch speech.

The editors of The Market in Babies and launcher Professor Mushin signing the book at its launch in November.

About The Market in Babies


Book Launch - Making Chinese Australia
by Mei-fen Kuo

Mei-fen Kuo's Making Chinese Australia: Urban Elites, Newspapers and the Formation of Chinese-Australian Identity, 1892–1912 was launched on Tuesday 26 November 2013 at the University of Melbourne, by Professor John Fitzgerald. During his launch speech, Professor Fitzgerald described Making Chinese Australia as:

‘A landmark work marking the arrival of this field … The best book ever written on the history of Chinese Australia.’

About Making Chinese Australia
Purchase Making Chinese Australia as a paperback


Book Launch - Anzac Memories (new edition)
by Alistair Thomson

The new edition of Anzac Memories was launched by journalist and speech-writer James Button on Monday 11 November 2013 at Readings, Hawthorn.

It is a great privilege to launch Al’s book, Anzac Memories. It is a wonderful book. I want to try to describe the effect it has had on me: what I have learnt from it, how it has helped me make sense of episodes of my own life, how it has made me think about the professional and ethical obligations on anyone who seeks to tell other people’s stories, and finally, what the book tells us about the impact of great public or private events on people’s lives, and how these effects are handed down through the generations…

…The book works on so many levels. The stories of Percy Bird, Bill Langham and Fred Farrell – three old diggers from the western suburbs of Melbourne whom Al interviewed near the end of their lives and who form the backbone of the book – are powerfully told. I like the way Al’s interviewing and reporting style is both meticulous and loose: meticulous with the facts and the careful, accurate reporting of their stories, loose in the way Al allows us to read our way into the characters and form our own impressions, without the author telling us what he thinks we should think of them. The men’s war and postwar stories are forceful responses to simplistic or jingoistic versions of the Anzac legend – they do not debunk the legend but they make us see the many ways in which it has been harnessed to political purposes, the ways in which it fails to tell the truth.…

But the most powerful thing I take from Anzac Memories is the story that is told for the first time in this new edition: the story of Al’s grandfather, Hector Thomson, of Al’s father David, and, in the background, of Al himself. Hector fought in Palestine as a member of the Light Horse, but contracted malarial encephalitis, which wrecked his health and spirit for the rest of his life. Al could not tell the story of Hector before [now] …

Read James Button's full launch speech.

Anzac Memories Launch Photos

James Button launching Anzac Memories

Alistair Thomson talking about the process of writing Anzac Memories

An enraptured audience

From left to right: author Alistair Thomson; journalist, speech-writer and book launcher James Button; and Director of Monash University Publishing Nathan Hollier

Guests at the launch of Anzac Memories

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Book Launch - An Imperial Affair
by John Rickard

An Imperial Affair: Portrait of an Australian Marriage, written by John Rickard,
was launched by Professor Raimond Gaita
on Wednesday 6 November 2013
at Readings in Hawthorn.

In launching the book, Professor Gaita said:

I am honoured that I was asked to launch An Imperial Affair: Portrait of An Australian Marriage. It is a fine book. Monash University Publishing is to be congratulated for choosing it for its list and for doing it justice.

When Nathan asked if I would write some words of praise for the cover, this is what I wrote:

In An Imperial Affair, John Rickard tells the story of his parents’ marriage between 1927 and 1962 when his mother died. It was, he reveals, lived with a complex integrity, faithful to a vow whose solemnity we now find hard to take seriously, but which transformed their love. This is a fine, moving book – the book of an historian, a writer, a loyal but troubled son and a wise man. The love, compassion and delicacy, evident throughout, offer its reader a deepened and more sympathetic understanding of the values that defined times to which we are now inclined to condescend.

This evening I will try to explain why I wrote that…

Read Raimond Gaita's launch speech in full.

An Imperial Affair Launch Photos

An Imperial Affair on display at Readings

Mingling before the launch

Raimond Gaita launches An Imperial Affair

John Rickard talks about An Imperial Affair

John Rickard and guests

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'Leichhardt Land' has launched

Read about Leichhardt Land.


Book launch:
John Leeton's Test Tube Revolution

On 16 September 2013 Alan Trounson launched John Leeton's book Test Tube Revolution: An Early History of IVF at Monash University, Clayton, Victoria.

In launching the book, Alan Trounson said:

We have needed a book on the extraordinary people and events in Melbourne through the 1970s and 80’s that was a revolution in reproductive medicine. The core of these accomplishments involved the team led by Carl Wood – the founding Chair of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Monash University. Who better to author this than Carl’s close friend and colleague – John Leeton, aided by journalist Robyn Riley. It is an easy read for one of the genuine milestones in human medicine. Dr Robert Edwards received the Nobel Prize for Medicine for IVF in 2010 for his work on initiating human IVF. Carl and his team actually created most of the technology that was, and is actually used, to produce the 5 million + IVF babies worldwide 1978-2011. John tells an incredible tale of the Melbourne group and their energy, innovation and shear bravery in the face of frequent and concerted opposition.

Read the full launch speech for Test Tube Revolution.

MC Helen Szoke introduces John Leeton

John Leeton speaking about Test Tube Revolution

Alan Trounson launching Test Tube Revolution to a full house

Linda, Alice and Maggie Kirkman. Alice was the first Australian to be born through surrogacy.

John Leeton and Nick Lolatgis at the launch of Test Tube Revolution
John Leeton signing a copy of his book for Dr Nick Lolatgis

Guests at the launch of Test Tube Revolution


Circus and Stage book launch photos

On Wednesday 21s August 2013, Mimi Colligan's book Circus and Stage: The Theatrical Adventures of Rose Edouin and G. B. W. Lewis was launched to a delighted audience. The book was launched by Peter Fitzpatrick, winner of the 2013 National Biography Award for his book The Two Frank Thrings.

Author Mimi Colligan describes her long years of research for the book.

Peter Fitzpatrick and Cathrine Harboe-Ree at the Circus and Stage book launch

Launcher Peter Fitzpatrick with Monash University's Librarian (and MC for the event) Ms Cathrine Harboe-Ree.


Henry Black book launch photos

Ian McArthur's biography Henry Black: On Stage in Meiji Japan was launched at Books Kinokuniya in Sydney on 1 August 2013.

Ian McArthur

At the launch, Ian wore a yukata made of material given to him by the storyteller San'yutei Enraku. Enraku, who died in 2009, was the head of the San'yuha guild of storytellers to which Henry Black belonged. The pattern on the yukata includes the Chinese characters for "Enraku". On the screen is a photo portrait of Henry Black. Photo by Shizue Hamilton.

Ian McArthur with Jim Kable and Yuri Matsui. Photo by Yuri Matsui

Ian McArthur with Jim Kable and Yuri Matsui. Photo courtesy of Yuri Matsui.

Ian at launch. In foreground is Ian's wife, Mari Minami, who is operating the PowerPoint. The screen shows Henry in the kabuki role of Banjuiin Chobee.

Ian at launch. In foreground is Ian's wife, Mari Minami, who is operating the PowerPoint. The screen shows Henry in the kabuki role of Banjuiin Chobee. Photo by Shizue Hamilton.

Walter Hamilton (former ABC Tokyo correspondent) in conversation with Ian at the launch at Kinokuniya book store in Sydney, August 1.

Walter Hamilton (former ABC Tokyo correspondent) in conversation with Ian at the launch at Kinokuniya book store in Sydney, August 1. Photo by Shizue Hamilton.

Ian and Alison Broinowski at launch Aug 1

Ian and Alison Broinowski at the August 1 launch. Photo by Shizue Hamilton.

Visit the Henry Black book page to find out more.


Where is Dr Leichhardt?

Winner of the National Biography Award 2013

Congratulations to Peter Fitzpatrick upon receiving the National Biography Award 2013. We are very proud to have published this extraordinary biography. Read more


Eilean Giblin launched by the
Governor-General of Australia, Her Excellency The Honourable Quentin Bryce AC CVO

On 15 July 2013 at the National Library of Australia, Her Excellency the Honourable Quentin Bryce AC CVO, Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia, launched Patricia Clarke’s new book Eilean Giblin: A Feminist between the Wars.

Read Her Excellency the Honourable Quentin Bryce's full speech for the launch of Eilean Giblin.

Left to right: author Patricia Clarke, Governor-General the Honourable Quentin Bryce, and director of Monash University Publishing Nathan Hollier during the launch of Eilean Giblin

Left to right: Dale Spender and Quentin Bryce at the launch of Eilean Giblin

Left to right: Dale Spender, Patricia Clarke and Quentin Bryce at the launch of Eilean Giblin

Author Patricia Clarke with the director of Monash University Publishing, Nathan Hollier


The Two Frank Thrings shortlisted for the National Biography Award 2013

Books shortlisted for the National Biography Awards 2013

Monash author Peter Fitzpatrick's book The Two Frank Thrings has been shortlisted for the 2013 National Biograph Award.

Chair of the judging panel Dr Bernadette Brennan said that “The quality of writing
and diversity of subjects and stories, including engagingly narrated stories about
what might be termed ‘ordinary’ Australian lives, demonstrate that the art of
biography and memoir is thriving in Australia.”

The Australian Book Review's Brian MacFarlane chose The Two Frank Thrings as his book of the year in 2012: 'Few books gave me more pleasure this year ... not because of any particular veneration for either Frank, but because it is a superbly executed biographical account of them. It is elegantly written, spiked with wit and insight, immaculately researched, and structured with a style and originality that enable the reader to get inside the lives of these two disparate Thrings."

The winner of the National Biography Award will be announced at 11am on Monday 5 August at a special free event at the State Library of New South Wales.


A Wild History
— joint winner of the Northern Territory Chief Minister’s History Book Award 2013

Joint winners of the Chief Minister’s History Book Award 2013, Jennifer Isaacs and Darrell Lewis
Co-winners Jennifer Isaacs and Darrell Lewis receiving their History Book Award from Norther Territory Chief Minister Adam Giles

Monash University Publishing has won its first book award, with A Wild History by author Darrell Lewis being announced as the joint winner of the Northern Territory Chief Minister’s History Book Award 2013.

The prize was shared with Jennifer Isaacs for her book Tiwi: Art, History, Culture

At the award presentation the book was described as:  “The history of the colonisation of the Northern Territory told in microcosm. An impressively-researched and richly detailed history of the Victoria River region, the reader gains an in depth understanding of adventure on the Territory frontier on the cusp of the twentieth century. We need more micro-histories like A Wild History to truly understand the history of colonisation in the Territory.”

Since its launch last year, A Wild History has also received a number of accolades including its nomination as his Book of the Year by The Australian journalist and author Nicolas Rothwell who describes it as:a triumph of publishing: the recuperation of a well-buried past.”

Dr Nathan Hollier, Director of Monash University Publishing, says particularly given 2012 was Monash University Publishing’s first full year of operation, it is pleasing  to have one of the press’s 2012 works be recognised in this way as one of the best Australian books of the year, as well as to see due recognition going  to Lewis.

A Wild History is a wonderful example of what the press aims to achieve, combining scholarly expertise with inspired writing. And it is a genuinely ‘popular’ history, both in terms of its popularity with readers since the book’s launch, and in its accessibility, colour, humanity, and drama.”

A second book by Darrell Lewis, Where is Dr Leichhardt?, is one of Monash University Publishing’s latest releases which is also being exceptionally well received.

Darrell Lewis receives the Chief Minister’s History Book Award 2013 from Adam Giles
Darrell Lewis receiving his award from Northern Territory Chief Minister, Adam Giles


Darrell Lewis and Nathan Hollier at the launch of Where is Dr Leichhardt?

Where is Dr Leichhardt?

Where is Dr Leichhardt? was launched by Professor Peter Read in Canberra at the National Museum of Australia on 16 May 2013, and in Queensland at Brisbane's Avid Reader Bookshop on 7 June 2013.


From a Distant Shore - launched by Adam Shoemaker

On Thursday 21st February 2013, Bruce Bennett and Anne Pender's book From a Distant Shore: Australian Writers in Britain 1820–2012 was launched by Adam Shoemaker, Monash University's Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education). Read Professor Shoemaker's launch speech.


Monash Nominations now open for the Warwick Prize for Writing

An innovative writing prize with global competition, across all disciplines.

Staff members and students of Monash University are invited to nominate a work for the coveted Warwick Prize for Writing. Launched in 2008, this innovative award is open to excellent and substantial pieces of writing in any genre or form, from any part of the globe.

Naomi Klein was awarded the inaugural prize in 2008 for The Shock Doctrine; and Peter Forbes, the 2011 Prize for Dazzled and Deceived: Mimicry and Camouflage. Managed by The University of Warwick, the £25,000 biennial prize has now been extended to include nominations from Monash students and staff as part of the alliance between the two universities.

For more information, or to nominate please view the Website at:

Twitter: @Warwickprize #warwickprize


Book launch invitation - From a Distant Shore

You are invited to celebrate the launch of:

From a Distant Shore:
Australian Writers in Britain 1820–2012

by Bruce Bennett and Anne Pender

                         Book cover - From a Distant Shore

To be launched by Professor Adam Shoemaker,
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education), Monash University

5.15pm, Thursday 21st February, 2013
Monash University, Caulfield Campus
Building H room B12
Caulfield campus map - PDF

RSVP: email
or phone 9905 0526
by February 15


Book of the year - A Wild History

On 22 December 2012, The Australian published an article on 2012 "Books of the year" as nominated by a selection of Australia's leading authors and critcs. In choosing A Wild History as his book of the year, Nicolas Rothwell said the following:

A Loose convention once required reviewers to select their books of the year from the titles they had themselves reviewed in the preceding 12 months. It is a convention I find easy to honour this year, in choosing A Wild History: Life and Death on the Victoria River Frontier, a sweeping record of the frontier region between the Kimberley and Top End in contact times. Its author, Darrell Lewis, is at once historian and investigator, archeologist and collector of unconsidered trifles. He has tramped the Victoria River region for decades, discovering its secrets. His tale is one of eccentrics, reprobates and maniacs; his characters are rebels, fantasists and murderers. The book is full of intriguing pictures and strange conversations. Laughter and tears are on every page. The narrative hovers on the edge of the unbelievable: the archival references prove the tale. Bushmen, bagmen, cattle-duffers, cattle-spearers - here they are. A Wild History is a triumph of publishing: the recuperation of a well-buried past.

Journalist and author

To read the full article in The Australian go to


A Wild History - review by Tom Griffiths

On 13 December 2012, Tom Griffiths reviewed A Wild History in Inside Story: Current Affairs and Culture from Australia and Beyond:

If Ned Kelly had been gentler and more learned but just as much a bushman he might have written A Wild History: Life and Death on the Victoria River Frontier (Monash University Publishing, $29.95). Darrell Lewis’s book is a distillation of bush wisdom and scholarly tenacity, of courageous fieldwork and equally adventurous archival sleuthing, of forty years of learning the country and of a lifetime of listening to history. Lewis has walked the Victoria River District in Australia’s northwest, swum its crocodile-infested rivers, got to know its plants, animals and people, slept under its stars, inspected its caves, recorded its inscriptions on rock and tree, and then pursued its material diaspora wherever it may have migrated. I am reminded of a great landmark work in Australian history, A Million Wild Acres, a book about the Pillaga Scrub by another bush scholar, Eric Rolls. Lewis’s book is full of frontier stories, superbly researched and skilfully told...
— Tom Griffiths

To read the full article Inside Story go to


Closedown for the Christmas / New Year period

Monash University Publishing will close at 1pm on Friday 21st December 2012 and will reopen on Monday 7th January 2013.
We wish you a very safe and happy Christmas, and all the best for 2013!


The China Breakthrough launched at Glee Books by James Curran

James Curran and Billy Griffiths

James Curran from The University of Sydney launched Billy Griffiths' new book on Gough Whitlam in China 40 years ago: The China Breakthrough: Whitlam in the Middle Kingdom, 1971. Billy was also interviewed by Phillip Adams on Late Night Live on 29 November.

See the full photo gallery from the launch on our Facebook page.


Peter Fitzpatrick in conversation – Tuesday 20 November

Peter FitzpatrickAustralian Book Review – for its first event at City Library – presents Peter Fitzpatrick , author of a new and highly praised dual biography, The Two Frank Thrings. Peter Fitzpatrick will be joined by noted film historian Brian McFarlane, co-editor of The Oxford Companion to Australian Film. Readers and theatre-goers will relish this conversation about the flamboyant and often deceptive lives of these two giants of the Australian entertainment industry.

Tuesday, 20 November at 6 p.m. for prompt 6.15 p.m. start

City Library, Majorca Room and Gallery, 253 Flinders Lane, Melbourne 3000

The library is located in the CAE building on the corner of Degraves Street and Flinders Lane,
between Swanston and Elizabeth Streets (Melway reference: Map 1B, M9).

This is a free event, but bookings are essential:

(03) 9699 8822 or


In Conversation with Clinton Fernandes
(a Gleebooks event)

Editor Clinton Fernandes will discuss his new book Peace with Justice: Noam Chomsky in Australia with Peter Slezak, UNSW's Professor of Philosophy, on 19 November 2012 at Gleebooks.

This is a free event. For further information and to RSVP please see Fernandes in Conversation at Gleebooks.


Launch of The Two Frank Thrings by Peter Fitzpatrick

More than 150 people gathered at the Arts Centre Melbourne on 23 August to celebrate Peter Fitzpatrick's new biography The Two Frank Thrings.

Launched by actor, director and writer Graeme Blundell and held in the superb ANZ Pavilion room overlooking Southbank, the crowd enjoyed listening to tales of Frank Thring junior - the actor and King of Moomba - and his flamboyant lifestyle. His relationship with his father, Frank Thring senior, was complex and difficult but inevitably shaped him profoundly. The senior Frank had created Efftee Films - Australia's first 'talkies' studio - and had built a fortune and what he hoped would be the beginning of a dynasty. His son squandered the fortune and derailed the dynasty in the process of creating his own flamboyant legend.

Monash University Publishing Director Nathan Hollier commented on the importance of this work to the press, stating: ‘This is a very scholarly work but also a very entertaining story that called for a hardback publication and a big marketing push’. He noted that this is a work of prize-winning quality.

The Arts Centre Melbourne Collections team delved deep into the archives and were able to display a collection of memorabilia from both Frank Thrings, including the famous 'golden dressing gown' worn by Frank junior. 

See our website for more information on the book or visit our Facebook page for more launch photos.

Author Peter Fitzpatrick, with Nathan Hollier, Director of Monash University Publishing

Author Peter Fitzpatrick, with Nathan Hollier, Director of Monash University Publishing

Photos and memorabilia of the two Frank Thrings

Photos and memorabilia of the two Frank Thrings

Peter Fitzpatrick speaking at the book launch

Peter Fitzpatrick

Peter Fitzpatrick and Graeme Blundell

Peter Fitzpatrick and Graeme Blundell

Guests mingling at the Art Centre Melbourne

Guests mingling at the Arts Centre Melbourne


Peace With Justice: Noam Chomsky in Australia

Editor Clinton Fernandes in conversation with Scott Burchill, 05/09/2012

The New International Bookshop presents Clinton Fernandes, author of Peace With Justice: Noam Chomsky in Australia, in conversation with Scott Burchill (Senior Lecturer in International Relations, Deakin University). The evening will be MC'd by Nathan Hollier, director of Monash University Publishing.


6:30pm, Wednesday 5 September
Meeting Room 1, Trades Hall
54 Victoria St, Carlton, Victoria

This is a free event.
Please RSVP to Sarah Cannon:

Phone: 03 9905 0526





Verge - creative writing anthology launch, 02/09/2012

The latest edition of the creative writing anthology Verge 2012: Inverse, edited by Samantha Clifford and Rosalind McFarlane, will be launched at the Melbourne Writers' Festival.

Poetry editor of The Age Gig Ryan will launch Verge 2012: Inverse at the Melbourne Writers’ Festival at a free event on Sunday 2 September at 11.30am in the Yarra Building.

Visit the Verge blog:
the Verge facebook page:





Asia Pacific Education - book launch, 30/08/2012

Monash University Publishing is delighted to announce the launch of Asia Pacific Education: Diversity, Challenges and Change, edited by Philip Wing Keung Chan, on Thursday 30 August 2012.

The launch will be held at 1pm in the TLS Seminar Room:
Room 110, 1/F Building 6 at Monash University's Clayton Campus.

The event will be MC'd by Mr. Mayur Katariya (Manager, Research Degrees of Office, Faculty of Education). Professor John Loughran will launch the book, followed by speeches from Professor Ilana Snyder (Associate Dean Research, Faculty of Education) and Dr. Nathan Hollier (Director, Monash University Publishing).

For Further information please contact our senior marketing coordinator, Sarah Cannon:
Ph: +61 3 9905 0526
(Please note that Sarah is part time; she works all day on Mondays and Thursdays; and in the morning on Tuesdays.)





The Two Frank Thrings - launch by Graeme Blundell on 23/08/2012

The Two Frank Thrings

Monash University Publishing is
delighted to announce that Australian
actor Graeme Blundell will launch
Peter Fitzpatrick’s The Two Frank Thrings
on 23 August 2012 at the
Arts Centre Melbourne.

Launch photos will be available here soon.






Launch of A Wild History by Darrell Lewis

Tom Griffiths with author Darrell Lewis. Photo by Nathan HollierProfessor Tom Griffiths (left) and A Wild History author Dr Darrell Lewis (right)

Professor Tom Griffiths launched Monash University Publishing's new title A Wild History, by Darrell Lewis, at the National Museum of Australia, Canberra, on 15 March 2012. Tom has kindly given permission for his launch speech to be reproduced here:

A Wild History - Professor Tom Griffiths' launch speech

This impressive book is a distillation of bush wisdom and scholarly tenacity, of courageous fieldwork and equally adventurous archival sleuthing, of 40 years of learning the country and a lifetime of listening to history. This is a book that makes me proud to be a historian because Darrell shows us what sensible magic great historians can conjure.

Darrell is about as secular and direct and true and no-nonsense as one can be, so he will be amused or possibly scornful at this mention of ‘magic’ in association with his work. But I’m fair dinkum. Something entrancing and mysterious does happen when sensitive and thoughtful historians steep themselves in the past. The essence of good history is a balance between empathy and perspective, between intimacy and distance – or, as W K Hancock put it, between attachment and span. Historians immerse themselves in context; they give themselves wholly and sensually to the mysterious, alchemical power of archives, testimony and environment. As well as gathering and weighing evidence piece by piece with forensic intensity, they sensitise themselves to nuance and meaning, to the whole tenor of an era, the full character of a person, the ineffable power of a place. And if they are like Darrell, they will also have walked that land, swum its crocodile-infested rivers, got to know its plants and animals and people, slept under its stars, inspected its caves, recorded its inscriptions on rock and tree, and then pursued its material diaspora wherever it may have migrated. What results is not just a work of scholarship but a work of art: a gift to the region and the nation from someone who is neither insider nor outsider but something remarkable in-between.

Every region of Australia – indeed, of the world – deserves its own Darrell. But you can’t plan for such a book to happen. You can’t write a grant application for forty years investment. You can’t get a corporate sponsor to back an enquiry so exhaustive and so discomforting. You certainly can’t get a Human Ethics Committee to approve such an open-ended and enduring investigation. You can’t design or contrive wisdom. It grows from personal commitment, original vision, a hunger to understand, a lifelong sense of responsibility to the people one talks to and writes about, a knowledge and love of the land, a willingness to be frugal, a capacity to be humble. These are some of the wellsprings of wisdom, and one of the virtues of history as a craft is that it accommodates and even encourages many of these wild sources of creativity.

Darrell has written ‘a wild history’ but he is not a wild man. He makes a fabulous blackberry jam. He carefully stitched my daughter’s goal umpiring flags with the result that, for years, AFL Canberra was governed by Darrell’s craftsmanship. He knows how to find the perfect campsite, out of the wind, free of mosquitoes and catching the morning sun. He writes with clarity, delicacy and precision and with a delightful natural rhythm to his words. Darrell is at home in the wild but he is a gentleman, and a gentle man. Ned Kelly’s ghost – in full rattling armour – has sometimes put in an appearance at Canberra gatherings but never, you may have noted, when Darrell Lewis is around. It is as if Kelly knows that you don’t mess with Lewis.

In this unique book, Darrell seeks ‘to replace current wild imaginings with a more soundly based “wild history”’. Although his knowledge and research is cross-cultural, and Aboriginal people are key players in this book, he has chosen to tell a white man’s history – and, as he says, literally a white man’s history because for much of the settler period white men outnumbered white women by as much as 50 or 100 to one. His account explores two themes especially – the nature of contact and encounter between Aborigines and whites, and the formation of a local settler society. His detailed ethnographic attention to cultural encounter and to the various phases of a violent frontier are compelling and utterly convincing. And he is also attentive to what was an environmental frontier, a physical assault on the land by the cattle themselves. The book draws on important methodologies such as Darrell’s renowned use of repeat photography to document environmental change, and it offers significant findings such as his observation of increasing tree numbers in riverine areas especially in the post-war period. The book is thus an environmental history in the best sense – the land, vast and harsh and majestic, is always present, not just as scenery, but as an everyday force and context that itself changes as it interacts with economy and society. And this is not a side-story but carries one of the central themes of the book, which is, to quote Darrell, that ‘Ultimately both sides lost – the coming of the cattle began the destruction of the paradise for both’ [Aborigines and settlers]. Darrell always weighs evidence carefully, resists any simple conclusions and leads us towards more complex, deeper understandings.

He is therefore a myth-buster extraordinaire. So, over the years we have learned from Darrell that Robert O’Hara Burke was possibly shot dead by John King and that Ludwig Leichhardt may have ended up in the Great Sandy Desert. And so here he delves beneath myth to reveal the hidden history of Jasper Gorge or he explodes the popular belief that Alexander Forrest’s report of his 1879 traverse of the Victoria River country caused a land rush. As Darrell puts it with characteristic directness: ‘The facts are otherwise’. He relishes demolishing other frontier illusions, showing how they were ‘nothing more than a pipedream, or perhaps a “pub-dream”.

You can see that Darrell is not only interested in understanding, as far as one is able, what happened, but also in how knowledge is transmitted across generations, or not. Thus a crucial insight of his work concerns the absence of family dynasties among the white people of the Victoria River country. There was, he observes, a weak transmission of local knowledge from generation to generation among local whites. ‘By contrast’, writes Darrell, ‘Aborigines don’t come from somewhere else, stay for a period and then leave. Instead, their family dynasties extend back to the Dreaming. … They are in fact the ‘keepers’ of much ‘European’ history.’ So Darrell’s history of the white people of this district is traced partly through the memories of the black people. This is an extraordinary inversion of the Australian frontier with which we think we are familiar – and another brilliant piece of mythbusting.

Let me share with you another inversion of the frontier that Darrell discerns. Here he is describing (p. 22) the impressions of John Lort Stokes in 1839:

Even though his explorations didn’t extend beyond the lower Victoria River, Stokes painted a glowing picture of the region and his report was an encouragement to further exploration. Before leaving the Victoria he expressed the desire that, ‘ere the sand of my life-glass has run out … smoke may rise from Christian hearths where now alone the prowling heathen lights his fire’. Stokes died on 11th June 1885, just two years after the first (at least nominally) Christian hearths appeared on the Victoria. The irony is that today there may well be more Aboriginal Christians in the district than there are European Christians and, over the years, many of the local whites could easily have qualified as ‘prowling heathens’.

Professor Henry Reynolds has written a superb Foreword to this book where he comments that Darrell ‘came to the historical records with a rich treasury of life experience – and it shows – he really does know what he is talking about.’ And Reynolds also observes that Darrell has the trust of the families of the district, both Aboriginal and European. ‘He is one of them’, declares Reynolds, ‘and not a blow-in busy-body from down south’. And in another of Henry Reynolds’ appraisals of this work, he rightly lauded Darrell’s ‘complete mastery of the sources’. I’m proud that this book grew out of a PhD thesis completed in the Centre for Environmental History in the ANU School of History.

I want to say a word about the Centre for Historical Research here at the National Museum of Australia, Darrell’s institutional home during the final stages of writing this book. I am very impressed by the books emerging from this Centre – there are many fine recently published examples by staff here, and some extraordinary manuscripts from Darrell’s colleagues are circulating at this very moment. It makes you think about what constitutes a productive environment for research and writing. Many universities have completely lost the plot (although I am lucky to work in an enlightened corner of a good one) and many institutions multiply the bureaucratic obstacles to deep, intensive thinking. But there is something going on here that is good, very good. The Centre is collegial, welcoming, generous-hearted, interdisciplinary and conversational. It fosters an enabling chemistry. Its director and staff believe in the importance of the book as a scholarly and public product. And the Centre no doubt benefits greatly from its place in a museum, for a museum guarantees a meaningful and lively public interface, and it also supplies the steadying ballast of a collection. Those of us interested in how to generate productive intellectual ferment might well benefit from looking at what is going on here under our very eyes.

I would also like to pay tribute to Darrell’s publisher, Nathan Hollier, and to Monash University Publishing. They quickly recognised a great book when they saw it. And they have made a beautiful production of it. Monash University Publishing has bestowed a rare honour on Darrell and one that will make him the envy of his professional colleagues – they have given him pages of text with footnotes at the base of them. In doing that, the publisher has judged the audience well. Darrell weaves a rich story of evidence and memory, of myth and truth, and the footnotes are part of it. People will love reading both above and below that line.

Finally, of course, we want to thank Darrell – for his organic, vernacular telling of true stories, for his years of fieldwork in the clear air of the Dry and in the floods of the monsoons, in the majestic ranges and across the great Mitchell grass downs, for his meticulous, archaeological attention to the surviving material evidence of the history of this region, for recording all those etched messages in the skins of boabs, for capturing the stories of people, black and white. I am reminded of a great landmark work in Australian history, a book by another bush scholar, Eric Rolls, about the Pillaga Scrub and called A Million Wild Acres. Like Eric, Darrell knows his land inside out. Like Eric, he gives the dignity of a name to his people, wherever possible. And like Eric, Darrell is a skilled storyteller – have a look at how he carefully unpacks one story of an Aboriginal attack in 1895 on two white teamsters, John Mulligan and George Ligar. It is a story told in compelling slow-motion over 27 pages in the middle of the book so that, as the drama unfolds, there is also revealed the full cross-cultural complexity, biographical depth and topographical beauty of the Victoria River country. In A Wild History, the fields of Indigenous history, settler history and environmental history – the three themes, incidentally, at the heart of the National Museum of Australia – are seamlessly and impressively entwined.

Thank you, Darrell, and congratulations! It gives me great pleasure to launch A Wild History.

—— Tom Griffiths

Tom Griffiths launching Darrell Lewis's book, A Wild History
Tom Griffiths:
Professor of History and Director, Centre for Environmental History, ANU;
Chair, Editorial Board, Australian Dictionary of Biography;
Adjunct Professor of Climate Research, University of Copenhagen;
Professorial Affiliate, Centre for Historical Research, National Museum of Australia.
Photo courtesy of Anne Faris

Darrell Lewis speaking at the launch of A Wild History
Author Darrell Lewis

Darrell Lewis signs his book, A Wild History, for Mick Dodson
Darrell Lewis and Mick Dodson

Monash University Publishing Manager Nathan Hollier, launcher Tom Griffiths and author Darrell Lewis.
Photo courtesy Anne Farris




Making Them Indonesians - launch

Helene van Klinken's Making Them Indonesians: Child Transfers Out of East Timor received an enthusiastic response at its official launch on 16 February 2012 at Monash University's Caulfield campus, and was attended by academics and others from southeast Asia and Australia. The book was launched by human rights worker and head of the International Center for Transitional Justice program, Galuh Wandita. Photographs from the launch are below:

Helene van Klinken delivering her speech at the launch
Making Them Indonesians author Helene van Klinken.

Nathan Hollier speaks at the launch of Making Them Indonesians
Nathan Hollier, manager of Monash University Publishing manager, at the launch.

Galuh Wandita launches van Klinken's Making Them Indonesians
Galuh Wandita officially launches Making Them Indonesians.

Patrick Walsh speaks at the launch of Making Them Indonesians
MC Patrick Walsh.

Marika Vicziany speaks at the launch of Making Them Indonesians
Marika Vicziany, from the Monash Asia Institute, at the launch of Making Them Indonesians.

Helene van Klinken signing copies of Making Them Indonesians
Helene van Klinken signing books.



A Lively Launch for a Life of SYN

Author Ellie Rennie at the Life of SYN launch. Photo by Evan Munro-Smith.

Ellie Rennie’s Life of SYN: A Story of the Digital Generation was launched on Thursday 8 December at Loop Bar in Melbourne. The event was emceed by the irreverent (except where Rennie is concerned) Bryce Ives, President of SYN, and Rennie’s book was launched by Andrew Crook, of

Monash University Publishing Manager Nathan Hollier said, "The book, the first in a digital cultures series, relates the kinds of creative responses to the contemporary media environment that Monash University Publishing also seeks to initiate. The launch was a lively and festive occasion and it's great to see such a high level of interest in an important work like Ellie's."

Visit our Facebook page for our coverage of the launch or see SYN’s Facebook page for some fantastic photos by Evan Munro-Smith that really capture the celebratory mood of the event.




Ian Britain celebrates the launch of our Prato book

On 13 October a crowd gathered at the ColourFactory to celebrate the launch of the Monash University Prato Centre's ten-year history A Site of Convergence.

Professor Stephanie Fahey, Cynthia Troup and Dr Nathan Hollier

Joanne Mullins, Linsey Gosper (ColourFactory) and Kate Hatch discuss Jo-Anne Duggan's work

Ian Britain amuses and moves the crowd

Dr Ian Britain launched the book with aplomb. Ian is a well known and distinguished essayist and cultural conversationalist of great urbanity, and is a past editor of the journal Meanjin. He was a contributor to Australians in Italy and is currently writing a biography of Australian artist Donald Friend.

A Site of Convergence was also launched by Professor Ed Byrne, Monash University's Vice-Chancellor, at Prato.




Nathan Hollier: Let's invest in developing our culture

Monash University Publishing's manager Nathan Hollier makes the case for investing in the humanities in The Australian's Higher Education supplement.




Announcement to all subscription agents

Monash University Publishing – journals in 2011 

Dear Subscription Agents,

Thank you for your patience with us in letting you know the details of our journals for 2011 and onwards.

Following the transition of Monash University ePress to Monash University Publishing in September 2010, we aim to concentrate on book publishing – both online and in print – and will continue to publish a small list of academic journals.

As of 2011, we publish the following journals:
History Australia
Monash Bioethics Review

As of 2011, we no longer publish the following journals:
The Australian Review of Applied Linguistics
The Bible and Critical Theory
The Telecommunications Journal of Australia
For further information about these journals, which all have new publishers, please follow the links above.

Please do NOT send any payments for 2011, as we will have to return these to you. If you have orders or enquiries for 2011 subscriptions please contact Sarah Cannon.

Thank you for your support, and please don’t hesitate to contact Sarah with any queries.

Sarah Cannon
Monash University Publishing
+61 3 9905 0526
(Please note that Sarah work Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays only.)




Launch of Andrew Reeves'
Up from the Underworld: Coalminers and Community in Wonthaggi 1909–1968

For book publishers, launch events occasion much excitement and trepidation. Will it just be you, the author, the bookseller and a slice of cake eaten in embarrassed silence? Or will the masses descend, hungry for the words of your author and your invited launcher, struggling to form an orderly queue in their eagerness to get a signed copy? Tired already after a restless night's sleep, you reassure yourself, in the preceding moments, that you’ve done all the preparation you could have: you’re in the hands of the gods now.

On 3 June 2011 the gods smiled on Monash University Publishing. Over 200 people turned up to the State Coal Mine Visitor’s Centre in Wonthaggi to hear Senator the Honourable Kim Carr launch Professor Andrew Reeves’ coalmining history with passion, impressive knowledge and a rich awareness of the book's contemporary relevance. Boxes of books lost in transit to the mine were located and available. Professor Bruce Scates, as MC, was entertaining and thought-provoking. The author was gracious, personal and moving, speaking of the strength of a community that, looking around the room, was unmistakable. Wine flowed. Hands were shaken. Smiles and stories were exchanged. Good will abounded. A sense of history hung in the air. Flashes and clicks of cameras added to the atmosphere, while recording it all.

A tour of the mine followed, and was safely negotiated, while the publishers retreated to a local pub to tell themselves how well it all went and how relieved they were it was over ...

Launch: miner. Bruce Scates with Andrew Reeves. The mine tour.
Images © 2011 Peter Love. Left to right: a local miner; Professor Bruce Scates and author Andrew Reeves; the mine tour.




An exploration of Wonthaggi's rich history

Historian Andrew Reeves unearths the rich mining history of Wonthaggi, located on Victoria's southeast coast, in his first book Up from the Underworld:Coalminers and Community in Wonthaggi 1909–1968.

The publication, to be launched next month the Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research Senator Kim Carr, explores how the town's workers came to exert a disproportionate amount of influence on the coal mining Industry for more than 60 years.

"The history of Wonthaggi is enigmatic: despite having only thin and broken seams of coal, the town was able to build a successful living that went against the profit predictions of many mine owners," Reeves says.

Read the full media release for Up From the Underworld.




Up from the Underworld coverLaunch

Up from the Underworld

Coalminers and Community in Wonthaggi 1909–1968

By Andrew Reeves

On Friday, 3 June, Monash University Publishing and the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU), Mining and Energy Division, Victorian Branch will formally launch Up from the Underworld: Coalminers and Community in Wonthaggi 1909–1968 by Andrew Reeves.

To be launched by Senator The Honorable Kim Carr. All welcome.

Date: Friday 3 June 2011
Time: 3 for 3.30pm
Venue: State Coal Mine, Wonthaggi, Visitor Centre
Garden Street, Wonthaggi (Melways REF X912 R 12 /
Vicroads Country Street Directory of Victoria REF 358 H 12)
RSVP: by 27 May 2011
Telephone: 03 9905 0526

Mine tour
We will also be holding an underground tour of the mine after the book launch at 4.30pm sharp. RSVPs are essential (to or 03 9905 0526).
Please note this is a walking tour and will take one hour to complete. We recommend sturdy shoes and warm clothing.

For details of the book please go to




VCA Art Forum Series #9: JANINE BURKE

Janine Burke will take a walk down memory lane, recalling what the Australian art scene, including the VCA, was like in the 1980s.

When: Thursday 19 May, 12.30pm - 1.30pm
Venue: Art Auditorium, School of Art, Gate 4, Dodds Street, Southbank
Further enquiries: 03 9685 9400 or email Scott Miles
Free admission and all welcome

Janine Burke is the award-winning author of sixteen books of art history, biography and fiction, including an acclaimed series about the Heide circle that includes biographies of Sunday Reed, Albert Tucker and Joy Hester. Her book, The Gods of Freud: Sigmund Freud's Art Collection, was shortlisted for 2007 NSW Premier's award for non-fiction.

This talk coincides with Janine's exhibition at Margaret Lawrence Gallery and her book titled Personal View: Photographs 1978-1986.

Image Credits: (Left) Elizabeth Gower and Jenny Watson, From Janine Burke: Personal View, Janine Burke.
(Right) Janine Burke. Photograph: David Sheehy.




Announcing our newest imprint: The Monash Asia Institute

The Monash Asia Institute and Monash University Publishing are proud to announce that Monash Asia Institute Press has become an imprint of Monash University Publishing.

Through this initiative, the Monash Asia Institute Press will gain access to new markets and production systems and attain greater visibility within global education and publishing sectors, while Monash University Publishing will be greatly strengthened by association with such a well established and prestigious scholarly publisher.

Production and distribution of Monash Asia Institute Press titles will now be handled by Monash University Publishing, while the Monash Asia Institute will retain full control of editorial decisions and procedures.

The Monash Asia Institute and Monash University Publishing are planning a launch event, to mark this new arrangement, in the near future.



Our new distributor and agent: Footprint Books!

Footprint BooksMonash University Publishing and Footprint Books are delighted to announce that effective immediately, Footprint Books is the exclusive agent and distributor in Australia and New Zealand. All orders and enquiries should now be directed to Footprint Books:
phone: (02) 9997 3973. 

Footprint Books will only accept returns of Monash University Publishing books if they were supplied by Footprint Books. For enquiries to Monash University Publishing please contact Sarah Cannon:
phone: (03) 9905 0526.




Announcement to all subscription agents

Monash University Publishing – journals in 2011 

Dear Subscription Agents

We do appreciate your patience with us in letting you know the details of our journals in 2011 and onwards.

Monash University ePress became Monash University Publishing in September 2010 (please refer to our new website at We aim to concentrate on book publishing – both online and in print – as well as continue to publish a small list of academic journals.

We will publish the following journals in 2010:
History Australia
Monash Bioethics Review

We will not publish the following journals in 2010:
The Australian Review of Applied Linguistics
The Telecommunications Journal of Australia

At this stage we cannot yet confirm who will publish:
The Bible and Critical Theory

For all of these journals we aim to send an announcement about how to renew your customers’ subscriptions shortly (editors are currently confirming new urls etc).

Please do NOT send any payments for 2011, as we will have to return these to you. If you would hold on to your 2011 orders until detailed information is available we would appreciate it – this won’t be too far away.

Thank you for your support, and please don’t hesitate to contact me with any queries.

All the best
Sarah Cannon
Monash University Publishing
+61 3 9905 0526
(Please note that I work Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays only.)



Companion to Philosophy in Australia and New Zealand launched

The first book from Monash University Publishing, A Companion to Philosophy in Australia and New Zealand, was launched by Professor Tony Coady of the University of Melbourne before a crowd of philosophy enthusiasts on 14 September at Readings Carlton.

The Companion, an encyclopaedic collection that addresses a diverse range of the theories, philosophers, publications and associations that make Australasian philosophy distinct, is a highly original work in its field.

Professor Coady, one of Australia’s best known philosophers, declared it a ‘genuine pleasure to initiate the debates and conversations that this book will inevitably generate’.

Dr Nick Trakakis, who coedited the Companion with Professor Graham Oppy from Philosophy at Monash University, cited articles that tell ‘fascinating and relatively unknown stories’ about local philosophy as being of notable interest, and singled out those that evoke the vibrancy and distinctiveness of the Melbourne philosophy scene as amongst his personal favourites.

The volume suggests some of the more broadly distinguishing characteristics of Australia and New Zealand philosophy that have inspired respect and some surprise from international philosophers and academics. ‘I suspect that part of the surprise comes from the image of our nations as backwaters in which sport and booze are dominant preoccupations,’ said Professor Coady. ‘How can Ockers do metaphysics?’

Dr Nathan Hollier, Manager of Monash University Publishing, said it was no coincidence that the Companion was launched alongside Monash University Publishing itself. ‘It embodies many of the qualities of serious scholarship that we are aspiring to become known for,’ he said.



Monash University Publishing officially launched

Launch speakers
Left to right: Deputy Vice Chancellor (Education) Professor Adam Shoemaker, University Librarian MsCathrine Harboe-Ree, Vice Chancellor Professor Ed Byrne, Dr Barry Jones and Monash University Publishing Manager Dr Nathan Hollier.

After many months of preparation, Monash University Publishing was launched on September 8, 2010. The launch was held in the foyer of the Robert Blackwood Hall, Clayton, below Leonard French’s great Alpha and Omega stained-glass window (a detail of which is used in the banner of this web site).

University Librarian Cathrine Harboe-Ree officiated at the ceremony, giving a warm welcome to over 100 guests including authors, editors, scholars, readers and fellow publishers.

Monash University Vice Chancellor Professor Ed Byrne praised the high standards of its first three titles, Australians in Italy, Closing the Gap in Education?, and A Companion to Philosophy in Australia and New Zealand, and spoke enthusiastically about the role that Monash Univerity Publishing will play within the university:

“Today is about boosting, in a very major way, the university’s capacity to communicate our scholarly works to communities of scholars around the world that we interact with and also the people in the regions where we have campuses”, he said.

The Hon Dr Barry Jones officially launched Monash University Publishing, having previously launched its earlier incarnation, Monash University ePress, in March 2005.  Dr Jones, chair of the government’s Book Industry Strategy Group, stated that electronic publishing will “challenge the existing industry, much of which is very conservative, to rethink what they’re doing and where they’re going."

“The opportunites are tremendous and exciting and I’m looking forward to Monash University Publishing making its submission to our group.”

Deputy Vice Chancellor (Education) Adam Shoemaker expressed a passionate commitment to open access publishing on behalf of the university. “Scholarly writing matters and accessibility to that work matters, and the transformation of that work into education in the broadest sense also matters” he said, emphasising that Monash University Publishing will make the majority of its publications available online for free.

He also gave tribute to the work of recently deceased colleague, editor and author Bill Kent, whose life was honoured in a memorial service the previous day. He said that together with Ros Pesman and Cythia Troup, Bill had produced an exceptional book in Australians In Italy.

Manager Dr Nathan Hollier gave thanks to the many people involved in making Monash Univerity Publishing a reality. “It’s been clear to me as a publisher that the reputation of Monash University is so strong and so established that if it has a major publishing arm it will almost certainly become a significant player within scholarly publishing in Australia and beyond.”

Staff at Monash University Publishing look forward to making that a reality.

Photos of the launch can be viewed on our Facebook page.



Monash Publishing book display case03/09/10

On 8 September Monash University ePress will be relaunched as Monash University Publishing, following nearly two years of work to establish a new platform and operating environment.

Monash University ePress was set up in 2003 by the inaugural manager, Michele Sabto, who had a brief to develop an economically sustainable electronic publishing model that used information technology to capture, publish, retrieve, read and present scholarly material.

The ePress was launched on 15 March 2005 by the Hon Barry Jones, who has accepted our invitation to relaunch the press.

The ePress has sold online access to books and journals, as well as printed versions of books. Its journals include History Australia, Monash BioEthics Review and Telecommunications Journal of Australia, and since coming into being it has published fifteen books.

A major review of the ePress in 2008–2009 resulted in the envisioning of a radical new future for this publishing operation.

Monash University Publishing will concentrate on open access publishing, particularly but not exclusively of scholarly monographs, and will become the single ‘shopfront’ for Monash-based publishing operations.

That is, site visitors will be able to access other Monash-based publications through the new Monash University Publishing website.

Everything published by Monash University Publishing will be available as print-on-demand, and selected books will be promoted and made available through bookshops.

An important feature of the new operation is the closer engagement of researchers. Three faculty based editorial boards have been established (Arts, Art & Design and Education), and discussions are underway with other faculties and research centres.

Special thanks are due to the ANU E Press of the Australian National University, which agreed to Monash becoming a collaborator in developing the software needed to get the new press up and running.

Monash University Publishing has also drawn on the ANU E Press example in developing its business model and systems.

We hope readers and authors now and in the future will find much of interest and value in the work of Monash University Publishing.