Power of the humanities

Explore stories about the social benefits and impact of the Humanities and the remarkable outcomes that can be achieved when humanities researchers collaborate on national and global challenges. Visit our Newsroom to explore stories about our people, community and research.

Dishonest politicians and the failure to act on mounting evidence of Robodebt’s inaccuracies has led to a major distrust in technology, media and essential services for our country’s most vulnerable people. Australian Research Council Laureate Fellowship recipient Terry Flew FAHA explains how his mediated trust research can help us better understand questions of trust as they relate to news media, digital platforms, corporations, and global institutions.

In 2023, we have mostly emerged from the extremes of isolation, but the effects of COVID-19 lockdowns on academia have converged with our looming environmental catastrophe. President of the Academy of Humanities Lesley Head FASSA FAHA reminds us that humanities scholars have the unique tools to address the challenges the world is throwing our way.

Art can communicate across time and space. It transcends life and death. Professor Ari Heinrich FAHA explains how this power is harnessed in an exhibition inspired by a Taiwanese author and created by a Chinese-Australian artist.

A presentist might assume that audiobooks are a modern invention. They would be wrong. Long before the digital world, literature was being shared orally. Martyn Lyons FAHA takes us back through the centuries to reveal how those who couldn’t read or write maintained a literary culture.

ARC Laureate Fellow, Professor Peter Veth FAHA MAACAI, takes us on a journey from the Ningaloo Coast through the Pilbara and into the Western Desert where innovative science and Indigenous knowledge are helping develop new understandings of the 60,000-year custodianship of Australian deserts.

Acknowledgement of Country

The Australian Academy of the Humanities recognises Australia’s First Nations Peoples as the traditional owners and custodians of this land, and their continuous connection to country, community and culture.