Vale Stuart Macintyre AO FASSA FAHA: 1947-2021

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With deep regret, the Academy acknowledges the passing of Professor Stuart Macintyre AO FASSA FAHA, one of Australia’s most outstanding historians and public intellectuals.

an autumn forest with a green square, pause, and triangle symbol over the top. The word 'Vale' is written in the square

Professor Macintyre was elected to the Academy in 1999. His senior colleagues noted at the time that his work was not only grounded in meticulously researched and rigorously argued left-wing thought but was at the same time wide-ranging in scope, devoid of dogmatism and not limited by his sympathies.

Stuart Forbes Macintyre was born on 21 April 1947 in Kew, Victoria. He obtained a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) from the University of Melbourne in 1968, a Masters degree from Monash University in 1971, and a PhD and the Blackwood Prize from Cambridge University in 1975.

Appointed as a Lecturer in the History Department at the University of Melbourne in 1980, Professor Macintyre taught close to 40 years at the University, where he also served as Dean of Arts from 1999 to 2006.  In this role, and as President of the Australian Academy of the Social Sciences between 2007-2009, he helped to build the international standing of the humanities and social sciences in Australia.

An extraordinarily prodigious scholar, Professor Macintyre’s scholarship covered many fields including the history of social movements, Australian public policy, intellectual history and labour history.

Stuart Macintyre was an award-winning author. The quality of his work was recognized through several awards including the Victorian Premiers Prize (for vol 4 of the Oxford History of Australia in 1987), the Age Book of the Year (for Reds In 1998), the NSW Australian History Prize and the Queensland (for the History Wars in 2004).  Professor Macintyre’s Australia’s Boldest Experiment: War and Reconstruction in the 1940s (New South), won the 2016 New South Wales Premier’s Australian History Prize and the 2016 Ernest Scott Prize and remains the landmark history of the decade. His last work, the second volume of his history of the Australian Community Party of Australia, The Party, is due for publication in 2022.

Professor Macintyre was a tireless promoter of the humanities and played a central role in developing and strengthening history, especially in the school curriculum, and in civics education. His public service in education policy and public policy in the tertiary sector spanned over twenty-five years.

Professor Macintyre made an enormous contribution to the history profession in Australia and globally.  He held various visiting fellowships, including at Griffith University, the University of Canterbury, the University of Western Australia, the Australian National University, the University of Otago and Harvard University. He was Editor or Editorial Board member of journals including Overland, Labour History, Australian Historical Studies, and The New Federalist. He was appointed President of the Australian Historical Association between 1996-1998 and became a life member in 2002. In recognition of his contribution to historical scholarship, in 2001 he received a Centenary medal. In 2007, he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from Murdoch University.

Stuart Macintyre was an inspiring teacher and PhD supervisor and mentor; his generous support of the careers of others was a gift from which many have benefited over several decades.

Professor Macintyre passed away on 22 November 2021. We extend our deepest sympathies to the Macintyre family and friends and to Professor Macintyre’s colleagues.

In memory of our Fellows

Our Fellows, current and those who have died, have contributed extensively to the rich Australian humanities community. When an Academy Fellow dies, we honour their impact by publishing an obituary by another Fellow who has had a long and close association with them.

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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.