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1-9 September 2018

The History Council of NSW’s flagship festival, History Week 2018: ‘Life and Death’, will explore life’s defining moments and the impact of death on communities across time.

The theme of Life and Death includes stories about life’s milestones and how different cultures come to terms with death. How do we commemorate people’s lives and what do rituals and burial practices reveal about our relationship with and understanding of life and death?

History Week will investigate how death has been feared, used as a form of punishment and shattered communities. It will also show how communities have rebuilt after loss, shared stories across generations and inspired remembrance and creative expression.

History Week will explore these ideas and many more from 1 to 9 September 2018.

Participate in History Week 2018

We invite our members to explore life and death in its many guises and register and event for History Week or apply to participate in our Speaker Connect program.

Speaker Connect applications close 30 April 2018
Event registrations close 29 June 2018

PLEASE NOTE: you or your organisation must be a current financial member of the History Council of NSW to register an event as part of History Week, or to participate in our Speaker Connect program. It is through the support of our members, partners and supporters that History Week is made possible. Become a member today.

Ideas for members

We invite our members to explore life and death in its many guises. Here are some suggestions:

  • Death as a natural part of life, including the passing of knowledge, customs etc over generations
  • Important life events or milestones from elders to younger generations
  • Remembrance and memorialisation especially in light of the end of war and centenary commemorations
  • The destruction of life and sense of loss – life after death and how communities rebuild
  • Disease and illness
  • Cemeteries, rituals and burial practices across time and different cultures
  • Crime and death as punishment
  • Contemplating mortality in literature, art and other creative forms
Key dates
  • 31 March 2018 – applications close for the History Council of NSW’s annual awards and prizes
  • 30 April 2018 – expressions of interest for History Week Speaker Connect program close
  • 29 June 2018 – History Week event registrations close
  • July 2018 – History Week events published on website and promotions commence
  • August 2018 – final History Week downloadable program released. Download the History Week 2017 program (4MB pdf).

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. Become a member today.

What is the History Week event registration process?

  1. All History Week event registrations must be made through our online registration form
  2. Registrations will be processed as they are received. Our 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 our staff
  3. Changes to any of these details must be sent immediately to us at
  4. After registrations for History Week 2018 close, our staff will begin to post events on our website, starting with Speaker Connect events. A downloadable program will also be made 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 our channels.

Check out our History Week page for more information about registration and what makes a successful History Week event.

What do speakers receive for their participation in Speaker Connect?

We offer a $300 honorarium to all speakers for their services. Alternatively, speakers can choose to contribute their fee as a donation towards program costs. Speakers will receive the honorarium on completion of their talk. Accommodation and travel costs within NSW will be arranged and paid by the History Council of NSW.

What do hosts receive for their participation in Speaker Connect?

  • A speaker free of charge. We will also cover the speaker’s travel costs
  • Promotional material
  • Publicity support to assist in promoting the event.

How will applications for Speaker Connect be assessed?

Applications will be assessed as they are received, and successful applicants will be contacted as soon as possible to begin organisation. Hosts will be selected against the following criteria:

  • Venue facilities – the capacity, audio visual equipment and access of your venue will be considered
  • Audience and and purpose – how would the program benefit your organisation?
  • Experience – previous experience in promoting and hosting events locally will be taken into consideration.

Speakers will be assessed on their ability to deliver exciting and thought provoking talks that illuminate aspects of Australian history in relation to the History Week theme.

Contact Us

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History Week is supported by the NSW Government through Create NSW. We acknowledge the support of our History Week partners: State Library of NSW, Sydney Living Museums, Macquarie University, City of Sydney and Dictionary of Sydney, and sponsor De Bortoli Wines.

Image: Mrs Bozzoli, funeral, Waverley Cemetery, 23 September 1947, courtesy State Library of NSW