Seven years after he began his science degree at Sydney University, 26-year-old Alexander Pereira is heading to Stanford University for postgraduate studies in philosophy. It’s a journey across the disciplines he didn’t anticipate back in 2014 but one that demonstrates the potential for the renewal rather than the ‘death’ of the Humanities around the globe.
This first appeared in The Australian on June 21, 2021 and is republished courtesy of The Australian.
There was rare cause for the humanities to celebrate this week when the National Archives of Australia – mandated to record, preserve and make public Australian Government records and history – finally received the emergency funding to preserve and digitise its collections, as recommended by the Tune Review.
The Australian Academy of the Humanities exists for the benefit of all Australians, as a leader, facilitator and champion of the histories, ideas, and cultures of our peoples, and of peoples around the world.
International collaboration is fundamental to humanities research. It provides the foundation for informed engagement in areas such as policy, trade, and diplomacy, and ensures that we can address challenges that cross national borders, such as climate change, ageing populations, cybersecurity, and systemic inequality.
Today, on the 52nd anniversary of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, we are introducing a new monthly feature in which we reconnect with many of our past Presidents.
It’s a chance to cast our minds back, learn lessons from the past; weigh up the current state of the humanities; and consider how, as a collective, we can address some of the biggest challenges of the future.
Our first Past-Presidents’ Perspective is with leading Australian musicologist Emeritus Professor Malcolm Gillies AM FAHA, who was President of the Academy from 1998-2001.
Professor Mabel, one of Australia’s finest translators, researchers and teachers of Chinese literature, is the subject of Fu Hong’s portrait Professor Mabel Lee, a finalist in this year’s Archibald Prize.
In Session 2 ‘Continuous & Diverse: A Long History of Many Cultures’ from our 2020 Academy Symposium, artist Abdul-Rahman Abdullah, designer and film producer Alison Page, artist Michel Tuffery, and filmmaker Lynette Wallworth add their voices to this discussion and draw on examples from their own artistic practice to demonstrate how we can begin to construct a more inclusive story of our nation – and all its people – through the arts: a story that doesn’t simply insist upon what we have known, but that unearths our unknowing and puts us all in conversation with one another, to ‘share the long held stories.’
This Saturday, 5 June, is World Environment Day 2021. Reimagine. Recreate. Restore. Together, these three terms form the theme of this year’s World Environment Day, a day when the United Nations seeks to focus the attention of governments, investors, businesses and communities all over the world on the increasingly urgent need to restore the earth’s ecosystems.
Nineteenth-century art forms. 20th-century business models. 21st-century people. In a world now defined by ever-increasing digital capability and possibility, and amidst a pandemic that has highlighted our need for arts and culture in our daily lives, does this disconnect continue to serve us, or is it time to rethink how we create, consume and classify the arts and its many forms?
We spoke with Professor Nick Evans, an Australian linguist and leading expert on endangered languages based at the Australian National University, about the many challenges facing Indigenous Australians during the 2020 coronavirus health emergency. While many of these challenges began to be understood and addressed last year at the height of the crisis, it is essential that we keep them firmly in view and continue to build our capacity to communicate well-tuned messages about health now and into the future.
The Australian Academy of Humanities views the latest Federal Budget as strong in a wide range of important areas, but also a moment of missed opportunity for a nation built on ingenuity and education.