2022 AHA Prizes and Awards Shortlists 

The AHA Executive Committee is delighted to announce the shortlists for the 2022 AHA biennial prizes and awards. We would like to thank the judges for their work in arriving at their shortlists and the AHA and judges congratulate all the historians on the lists. 

Winners for all prizes and awards (excluding the Magarey Medal) will be announced at the AHA Conference Dinner on 30 June. The Magarey Medal will be announced during the Association for the Study of Australian Literature annual conference in early July. 

Magarey Medal for Biography Shortlist (alphabetical order) 

Bernadette Brennan, Leaping into Waterfalls: The Enigmatic Gillian Mears (Allen & Unwin, 2021)

Eleanor Hogan, Into the Loneliness: The Unholy Alliance of Ernestine Hill and Daisy Bates (NewSouth 2021)

Krissy Kneen, The Three Burials of Lotty Kneen: Travels with my Grandmother (Text, 2021)

Louise Martin-Chew, Fiona Foley: Provocateur, An Art Life (QUT Art Museum, 2021)

Cassandra Pybus, Trugganni: Journey Through the Apocalypse (Allen & Unwin, 2020)

Serle Award Shortlist (alphabetical order) 

Matthew Birchall, ‘Company Colonisation and the Settler Revolution, 1820–1840’

Daniel May, ‘Taking Fire: The Historical and Contemporary Politics of Indigenous Burning in Australia and the Western United States’

Karen Twigg, ‘Along Tyrrell Creek: An Environmental History of a Mallee Community’

Amy Way, ‘Historicising Human Antiquity in Australia, 1860-1960’

Kay Daniels Award Shortlist (alphabetical order) 

Bill Bell, Crusoe’s Books: Readers in the Empire of Print, 1800-1918 (Oxford University Press, 2021)

Mark Dunn, The Convict Valley (Allen and Unwin, 2020)

Janet McCalman Vandemonians (Melbourne University Press, 2021)

Katherine Roscoe, ‘Work on Wadjemup: Entanglements between Aboriginal Prison Labour and the Imperial Convict System in Western Australia’, Studies in Western Australian History, 34, 2020; and ‘Islands of Incarceration and Empire Building in Colonial Australia’, in Douglas Hamilton and John McAleer (eds) Islands and the British Empire in the Age of Sail (Oxford University Press, 2021).

Hancock Prize Shortlist (alphabetical order) 

Janet Borland, Earthquake Children: Building Resilience from the Ruins of Tokyo (Harvard University Asia Center, 2020)

This innovative, compelling, and often moving story of Japan’s Great Earthquake of 1923 is more than a major contribution to the history of childhood. Told largely told through the eyes of the children who experienced the disaster, Janet Borland draws on a rich collection of primary materials, including children’s drawings and essays, to provide original insights into the ways in which children were used in post-earthquake Japan. Subsequent debates about education, urban planning, and architecture reveal how Tokyo’s reconstruction helped transform the nation.

Jason Gibson, Ceremony Men: Making Ethnography and the Return of the Strehlow Collection (SUNY Press, 2020)

This sophisticated, beautifully crafted piece of work on the Strehlow archives turns our understanding of it on its head, demonstrating that collections that are at present often uncritically condemned as ‘colonialist’ were often collaborative and directed by Aboriginal objectives. Jason Gibson, working in collaboration with the traditional landowners, has produced an historical and ethnographic critique of the archive that is a great example of interdisciplinary research. Its significance therefore extends beyond the case study it illuminates to intervene in important contemporary cultural debates.

Luke Keogh, The Wardian Case: How a Simple Box Moved Plants and Changed the World (University of Chicago Press, 2020)

A plant box is not an obvious choice for a history monograph, but Luke Keogh manages to do something quite novel. He uses the history of an artefact – the Wardian box – to get a better understanding of how plants were transported around the world in a global scientific and commercial exchange, and to highlight the importance of those plants in the colonial enterprise. This is a fascinating transnational, environmental history that also shows how our relationship with nature has changed over time.