Bill Ashcroft

Emeritus Professor Bill Ashcroft

  • Post Nominals: FAHA
  • Fellow Type: Fellow
  • Elected to the Academy: 2015
  • Section(s): English


Ashcroft is an internationally renowned literary critic and theorist, whose publications are widely influential across the discipline of postcolonial studies, as well as within Australian literary studies. Recognised as a pioneering scholar in the globally comparative field of post-colonial literary studies, he has published extensively on Australian, Indian and African literatures and the intersections between post-colonialism, utopianism and globalisation.

Ashcroft is an Australian Research Council (ARC) Australian Professorial Fellow and Professor in the School of the Arts and Media at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) where he has worked since 1988. His specialties are Australian literary studies and post-colonial studies and he inaugurated the Australian Studies Program in 1990.

In 2001 he won an Innovative Teaching and Educational Technology fellowship at UNSW and has maintained an interest in innovative teaching. In 2005 he was appointed Chair Professor in the School of English at the University of Hong Kong where he taught until 2008. In 2010, having returned to UNSW he won a five year ARC Professorial Fellowship, completed in 2015. His research has focused on Australian studies and post-colonial studies of which he is a founding exponent.

The Empire Writes Back co-authored with Gareth Griffiths and Helen Tiffin, was the first text to systematically examine this field. His focus on post-colonial studies has emphasised language transformation, and most recently the alliances between postcolonial theory and globalisation, transnationalism and utopianism.

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.