17th Biennial Conference of the
Gesellschaft für Australienstudien | German Association for Australian Studies
Trier University, 27 September – 2 October 2021
Australia’s past and present are closely connected to the sea: In coastal regions, maritime areas are an integral part of Country and thus play a vital role for Aboriginal communities. The sea also looms large in Australian cultural memory and imagination in general, as a passageway and connection to other parts of world with images oscillating between fear (migration) and longing (postcolonial melancholia). In addition, it is an important economic factor as the maritime industry, from gas and oil extraction to cruise shipping, currently generates 9 billion AUD of the Australian GDP. As a destination for domestic and international tourism (surfing), the seaside and the Australian maritime world (Great Barrier Reef) plays an important role in creating a sense of identity as well as selling Australia as a ‘brand’ to global consumerism. From this multitude of relations, a multiplicity of seascapes emerges – spaces of knowing, of contact, of negotiation and transition, and of movement (of ideas, goods or people). Seascapes demonstrate Australia’s deep connection to Oceania, the Pacific region and the world. However, in the face of climate change and rising sea levels, many of these connections are becoming tenuous.
The 2021 conference of the Gesellschaft für Australienstudien | German Association for Australian Studies will discuss Australian seascapes in an interdisciplinary perspective, including (but not restricted to) contributions from the field of Cultural Studies (literature, performing arts, film, visual arts), History, Political Science, Anthropology, and Geography
The conference will take place online via Zoom, combining online lectures (»webinars«) with panel presentations and discussions. All conference events will take place between 8:00-13:00 CEST/ 16:00-21:00 AEST, giving Australian and German participants the opportunity to attend at their convenience.
The conference is supported by the DFG, hosted by Trier University and organized by PD Dr. Eva Bischoff, Department of International History (firstname.lastname@example.org).