Tasmania has a long and rich theatrical heritage, as one of the earliest Australian spaces for European performance. The State Library of Tasmania houses an extensive collection of performing arts ephemera in its Tasmaniana and WL Crowther libraries. Materials include programmes, handbills, posters, and scrapbooks reflecting nearly two centuries of theatrical activity. A variety of possible projects exist within these collections.
Indicative projects could include: a study of nineteenth-century Shakespeare productions by local and visiting companies; a history and analysis of particular local theatre companies; an investigation of the range of entertainments on offer in Van Diemen's Land / Tasmania within a discrete period; an analysis of particular scrapbooks of ephemera put together by theatre enthusiasts.
Early Australian poetry was a battleground: ambitious amateur and professional poets, publishing in the nascent colonial press, strove to create new forms and voices to invoke the antipodean bard. Yet despite Elizabeth Webby's annotated bibliography of poetry in colonial newspapers and magazines, there has been very little textual and critical study of the poetry published in Van Diemen's Land serials and early books and pamphlets - its derivation, its reflections on contemporary events, its use in the battles between warring editors and journalists, the identification of the (usually anonymous or pseudonymous) poets, its satirical form, etc.
This project offers the opportunity to conduct archival research, to do introductory textual editorial work, book history, and advanced literary analysis. Projects will focus on newspaper publications, as well as Janus N. Dullrazor's Yowyang: a poem, in seven cantos (1859) and Maxwell Miller's Tasmanian House of Assembly: a metrical catalogue (1860).
"The World Through A Woman's Eyes": Women Travel Writers In Tasmania
The nineteenth-century British Empire opened up a world of travel for its imperial citizens, who travelled for work, curiosity, immigration, leisure, and duty. As the century progressed, middle- and upper-class women found in travel the freedom to expand their gradually-won independence. Many critics have explored famous women travellers such as Mary Kingsley, Isabella Bird, and . What did women's travel and travel writing look like at the antipodes, in the Australian colonies? How was their travel implicated in colonial expansion? How did women negotiate the competing imperatives of travel and settlement?
This project examines women's travel writing about Tasmania in the nineteenth century as a case study in an analysis of gender, travel, and empire. It will draw its source material from Celmara Pocock's Bibliography of Tasmanian Travel Writing , and provides the successful student with an opportunity to contribute new material to this important resource.
The Office of the Agent-General in London was responsible for marketing Tasmania as a destination for tourists and migrants. This project will use records relating to the four decades from the 1950s to the 1980s to make an examination of changing promotional strategies.