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How did Australia lay claim to 5.8 million square kilometres of its largely forgotten southern neighbour, Antarctica? Rohan Howitt will trace the origins of the Australian Antarctic Territory to the 1830s, examining contemporary newspapers, government and diplomatic sources, commercial records, and popular culture, to reconstruct the relationship between Australia and Antarctica. Howitt will demonstrate how the acquisition of an Antarctic territory was the culmination of nearly a century of Australian fascination with Antarctica, and that this fascination was driven as much by ordinary people as by politicians and explorers.

Rohan Howitt Profile Photo

Rohan Howitt is a PhD student in the Department of History at the University of Sydney. His PhD thesis, ‘Australia, Antarctica, and the Logics of State Formation, 1839-1933’, examines Australia’s political, scientific, economic and cultural engagement with Antarctica.


Proudly presented as part of the History Council of NSW’s Speaker Connect program for History Week 2016.

When: Sunday 11 September 2016, 2:00pm
Where: The Old Kirk, Yamba Museum
River Street
Yamba NSW 2464
Cost: Free
Presented by The Port of Yamba Historical Society Inc.

Image: Photograph of the SY Aurora at King’s Pier, Hobart, courtesy University of Tasmania

History Week Neighbours postcardThis event is part of
History Week: Neighbours
3-11 September 2016
Presented by the History Council of NSW
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