Climate Change in Australian Narratives: a project from the AustLit database

On Wednesday, April 28 2021, the Climate Change Communication and Narratives Network was joined by Dr Deborah Jordan, Nina Clark and Dr Catriona Mills to discuss Climate Change in Australian Narratives and the Austlit database.

AustLit is the key resource for Australian literary studies. This seminar introduced and discussed the AustLit project Climate Change in Australian Narratives, designed to shine a light on the ways that Australian writers are currently addressing and have, in the past, explored the most urgent environmental, social, and technological concern of current generations. The project highlights Australian creative and critical writing that examines the impacts of human-induced climate change and provides necessary contextualising information on the science and consciousness-raising work at the community level. This presentation focused particularly on the depth and range of the Climate Change Narratives project; questions of environmental and political aesthetics and political; and the interface between science and fictional representations.

A recording of the presentation is available here.

About the Speakers
Dr Deborah Jordan, project leader for AustLit’s Climate Change in Australian Narratives, is an award-winning historian, biographer, and Petherick Reader at the National Library of Australia, research fellow (adj) in History Monash University, and associate researcher with the T. J. Ryan Foundation at the Queensland University of Technology. She has published widely in Australian cultural history and women’s history, has held research fellowships at The University of Queensland, the National Library, Deakin, and Flinders University, and is author of six commissioned history books and numerous reports. She has also worked as a co-operative weather observer for the Bureau of Meteorology.

Nina Clark was an undergraduate student at The University of Queensland, completing a Bachelors’ Degree focusing on zoology, film and television, and writing, when she interned on the Climate Change in Australian Narratives project. She is interested in climate change in both a scientific and communications aspect. Her role as a student scholar in the climate change project allowed her to dig deep into the treasure trove of literature that is AustLit and build a project combining science and literature. Her research project focused on ‘Climate change representation of coastal areas in Australian literature over the past 100 years’, using the concept of a sediment core as her theoretical framework.

Dr Catriona Mills is interim Director of AustLit: Discover Australian Stories database. She began work with AustLit in 2010 and has since worked on a range of research projects. She holds degrees from Macquarie University and The University of Queensland and has published on adaptations of penny-weekly serials to the English suburban stage, authorship attribution in Australian nineteenth-century periodicals, steampunk, and Doctor Who.

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