History Week: Pop!

2-10 September 2017  |  #HistoryWeek17

History Week 2017 seeks to examine, unravel and understand Australian ‘popular culture’. As History Week enters its 20th year, History Council of NSW members are invited to celebrate popular culture across the decades, to investigate its construction and analyse its impact on communities and individuals.

How has popular culture, whether it be music, theatre, dance, film, television, sport or fashion, changed over time? Who defines it, and why? What does popular culture mean on an individual, community, regional and national level? How has the ‘digital age’ and 21st century technological change influenced popular culture? Have we entered a ‘new age’ of popular culture with audiences as creators, shifts in authority and more democratic modes of creative expression? Is history now part of popular culture?

History Week will explore these questions and many more from 2 to 10 September 2017. A downloadable program of events will be published soon along with event postings below.

PLEASE NOTE: Event registrations for History Week 2017 have now closed. A program will be available for download online soon.

History Week is supported by the NSW Government through Create NSW

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History Week 2017 starts in








Featured events

Annual History Lecture 2017

The Popular is Political:

Struggles over national culture in 1970s Australia

How did popular culture make sense of the social change of the 1970s? Was the popularity of the ocker a reaction to the women’s movement? And how did popular histories on film and television contribute to this cultural contest?

The History Council of NSW is proud to announce its popular Annual History Lecture will be delivered by Associate Professor Michelle Arrow (Macquarie University). Join us for history and nibbles!

The Annual History Lecture is supported by Create NSW, Sydney Living Museums and De Bortoli Wines.

When: 6-9pm, Tuesday 5 September 2017
Where: The Mint, 10 Macquarie Street, Sydney
Cost: $45 HCNSW Members / $50 General Admission (excl fees)
SPECIAL OFFER: $30 Students – contact us to claim the offer.

Credit: Susan Papuan photography

Speaker Connect

Each year, the History Council of NSW offers host organisations across Sydney and regional NSW the chance to receive speakers during History Week.

Please note, the expressions of interest to host a speaker during History Week are now closed. Find out more about our year-round Speaker Connect program.

Speaker Connect 2016

On the neighbour’s circuit: good and bad neighbours in the colonial Hunter Valley

At Singleton Library, Dr Mark Dunn will explore the politics of neighbourly visitation to homes of prominent settlers in the colonial Hunter Valley.

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Australia’s Southern Empire: How Antarctica was made Australian

At Yamba Museum, Rohan Howitt traces the origins of the Australian Antarctic Territory and the fascination it inspired in the Australian community.

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Finding the ‘Perfect Blend’ in an Undervalued Genre

At Margaret Martin Library, Dr Liz Giuffre and Dr Sarah Attfield will examine television soap opera Neighbours as a piece of Australian media history.

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Deathly Neighbours: the evolution of Sydney’s cemeteries

At Fairfield City Museum and Gallery, Lisa Murray will explore the design of Sydney’s cemeteries and how friends and neighbours were treated in death.

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Macarthur and Harris, and the Kings who came between

In this History Week, Jo Henwood will explore historic neighbours John Macarthur, John Harris and Governor King at Katoomba Library and Cultural Centre.

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More than just neighbours: Māori in NSW since 1793

At Addison Road Community Centre, Hohepa Ruhe will explore Māori history and heritage in NSW that spans 223 years, connecting past and present.

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Territorial Myths: The construction of legend and historical ownership in country town communities in the 20th century

At Tamworth Library, Dr Louise Prowse explores how country towns took ownership of folk myths and historical legends in order to form distinct identities.

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Deathly Neighbours: the evolution of Sydney’s cemeteries

At Ashfield Library, City Historian Lisa Murray will explore the design of Sydney’s cemeteries and how friends and neighbours were treated in death.

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From Canton to the colonies: Chinese women in 19th century New South Wales

In 1871 there were just 12 Chinese women in NSW. At Corrimal Library, Dr Kate Bagnall will explore four of these women and their lives around the colony.

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Women radio broadcasters and their listeners

At Moruya, Dr Jeannine Baker will reveal the ways women listeners actively participated in radio broadcasting and shaped programme content and style.

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Everyone has at least one really good story

Join oral historian Benjamin Thorn at Grafton Library as he explores how the oral history of ordinary people can be an excellent historical tool.

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History Week 2017: Pop!

The History Council of NSW is excited to announce the theme for History Week 2017 is ‘popular culture’. History Week 2017: Pop! 2-10 September 2017.

History Week 2016 Report

Each year, the History Council of NSW prepares a report on its flagship event, History Week. Read the report for History Week 2016 ‘Neighbours’ here.

About History Week

Now in it’s 20th year, History Week is the History Council of NSW’s flagship event which engages communities across New South Wales.

Each year History Council of NSW members collaborate to host events that explore a particular theme. From talks to exhibitions, tours to online engagement, there is something for everyone.

Find out more below or check out our Frequently Asked Questions to the right.


Do I have to be a History Council member to participate?

History Week events are open to the public. However, all organisations or individuals wishing to host a History Week event or take part in the History Week Speaker Connect program must be current members of the History Council of NSW. The History Council relies on the financial support of its members to deliver its annual programs. Apply to become a member here.

What makes a successful History Week event?

Successful History Week events:

  • relate to or incorporate the History Week theme;
  • select a running time most appropriate for the target audience (for example, many students, full-time workers and young people are unable to attend events scheduled during the day. We advise hosts to consider running an event outside of regular office hours to attract wider audiences);
  • select a format most appropriate for the target audience (for example, a lecture, exhibition, interactive/immersive experience;
  • are well and consistently promoted at least one month in advance and across a variety of channels, in addition to the History Council of NSW’s online channels;
  • have a clear, concise and engaging event description, along with an eye-catching and relevant feature image, which entices audiences to attend;
  • include clear instructions on how attendees can book or register for the event, whether this be through an online booking system, or via a contact email or phone number.
What is the History Week event registration process?
  1. All History Week event registrations must be made through the History Council of NSW’s (HCNSW) online registration form here;
  2. Registrations will be processed as they are received. HCNSW staff will contact you to confirm the details of your registration, including the event title, description, image and contact person. The contact person listed on the registration form will be the primary liaison between the host organisation and HCNSW staff;
  3. Changes to any of these details must be sent immediately to the HCNSW at admin@historycouncilnsw.org.au;
  4. Registrations for History Week 2017 will close on Friday 30 June 2017. HCNSW staff will begin to post events on the HCNSW History Week website in the first week of July, starting with Speaker Connect events. By Monday 31 July 2017, all events will be published on the HCNSW History Week website, and a downloadable program will be available;
  5. Events will be circulated and advertised throughout the months of July and August. Event hosts are strongly encouraged to advertise their selected event through a variety of their own channels in addition to HCNSW channels;
  6. After History Week, event hosts will be approached to provide feedback on their experience of the event and its organisation and promotion. Detailed and specific feedback is greatly appreciated;
  7. The HCNSW will release a History Week report for download on the HCNSW website.


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