Category Archives: Labour historiography

Malcolm Ellis: Labour Historian? Spy?

Malcolm Ellis: Labour Historian? Spy?

Andrew Moore
UWS, Macarthur

First published in Labour and Community – Proceedings of the Sixth National Labour History Conference, Wollongong, October 1999

When, on New Year’s Day 1952, Sir John Ferguson, the eminent bibliographer and Industrial Commission judge, wrote to his friend and colleague, M.H. Ellis, the anticommunist historian, he evinced sentiments with which many labour historians would agree. Continue reading

James Normington Rawling Collection

James Normington Rawling Centenary Seminar – 17 Apr 1998

This seminar was co-hosted by the ASSLH and the Noel Butlin Archives Centre (NBAC) to celebrate the centenary of the birth of James Normington Rawling (1898-1966) returned serviceman, pacificist, rationalist turned CPA functionary, expelled from the CPA in 1939, flirted with Trotskyism, became chief informer at the Victorian Royal Commission on the Communist Party in 1949, was subsequently connected with Catholic Action and the Congress for Cultural Freedom. Rawling was a literary historian, a pioneer labour historian and unrivalled collector of Australian radical manuscripts, pamphlets and ephemera. Continue reading

2011 ASSLH conference – Raphael Samuel: A Biography in Development

 

Raphael Samuel: A Biography in Development

 Sophie Scott-­Brown

Abstract

Raphael Samuel constitutes a fantastic candidate for an intellectual biography. He had a working life of endless activity, covering a vast array of different interests. He was first and foremost a socialist and an historian, but he was also a tireless educator, energetic facilitator, prolific editor, enthusiastic writer, and shrewd social critic.  Continue reading

2011 ASSLH conference – Activists in Aggregate: Collective Biography, Labour History, and the Biographical Register of the Australian Labour Movement, 1788-­1975

 

Activists in Aggregate: Collective Biography, Labour History, and the Biographical Register of the Australian Labour Movement, 1788-­1975

Andrew Moore, Yasmin Rittau, John Shields

Abstract

Despite the solid – if occasionally polemical – record of research and publication in the biographical genre by Australian labour historians over the past sixty years, there are hundreds if not thousands of labour activists whose lives have remained un- or under-documented; lost, for all intents and purposes, to both the established scholar and the enthusiastic student. The Biographical Register of the Australian Labour Movement 1788-1975 represents an attempt to address these lacunae by publishing brief (300-700 word) biographical entries on some 2,000 activists about whom we have been able to discover at least a fragment of information and whom we consider to have made a significant but hitherto un- or under-recorded contribution to the movement’s history at the national, State, regional and/or local scale at some point down to the mid-1970s.   Continue reading

2011 ASSLH conference – Labour History in Western Australia and the role of the ASSLH, Perth Branch

 

Labour History in Western Australia and the role of the ASSLH, Perth Branch1

Bobbie Oliver

Abstract

This paper surveys the current state of labour history teaching and research in Western Australia.  It argues that, while a form of labour history remains viable in labour relations, management or productivity research, it is disappearing as an undergraduate subject in University History Departments.

Continue reading

2011 ASSLH conference – Melbourne Labour History

Melbourne Labour History:
A Collective Biography of its First Generation1

 Peter Love

Abstract

Bruce Shields’ recent memoir of the ASSLH’s early years, differing from the late, lamented Eric Fry’s earlier (1999) account, is a timely reminder of the vibrant intellectual culture, and the passions imbedded in it, that gave birth to our Society. Continue reading

2011 ASSLH conference – Purposes almost infinitely varying: Archives as sources for labour biography

 

Maggie Shapley

Abstract

 

A former Deputy Keeper of the Public Record Office, Sir Hilary Jenkinson, described the value of archives thus: ‘Drawn up for purposes almost infinitely varying – the administrative or executive control of every species of human undertaking – they are potentially useful to students for the information they can give on a range of subjects totally different but equally wide.’ This paper explores the purposes for which records are created and the bearing that this has on their value as sources for biography. Continue reading

2011 ASSLH Conference – ‘Understand the Past, Act on the Present, Shape the Future’

‘Understand the Past, Act on the Present, Shape the Future’
Transcript of Eric Fry’s Account of the History of the ASSLH

I will be talking about the formation of the Australian Society for the Study of Labour History in 1961 and its early years to the mid-­1960s.  The formation of the Australian Society for the Study of Labour History – Labour History Society for short – was a decisive occasion in Australian labour history, Continue reading

2011 ASSLH Conference – Entwined Associations: Labour History and Its People in Canberra

Entwined Associations: Labour History and Its People in
Canberra1

Melanie Nolan

Canberra Region Branch, ASSLH 1961-­2011: an association of university, archives, society, unions and dictionary

This is a volume of some of the papers to be presented to the 12th biennial conference of the Australian Society for the Study of Labour History (ASSLH), to be held in Canberra from 15 to 17 September 2011.2  Continue reading