1917: Melbourne at War

Tuesday, December 05, 2017 at 06:00 PM


Old Treasury Building
20 Spring St
Melbourne, Victoria 3002
Google map and directions

Event contact

Margaret Birtley

0418 814 957

Melbourne was at war in 1917 – though you might not know that from the Anzac centenaries and their focus on Anzacs fighting on foreign fields. In this seminar, distinguished historians illuminated aspects of Melbourne’s war.

Judith Smart (Adjunct Professor at RMIT University and co-editor of Victoria and the Great War) explored a year of domestic disintegration in the national capital of Melbourne, culminating in the bitterness of the second conscription referendum. 

Joy Damousi (Professor of History, University of Melbourne and co-editor of The Conscription Conflict and the Great War) examined the 'yes' campaign at Melbourne University. 

The seminar was chaired by Alistair Thomson (Professor of History, Monash University).

John Lack (Associate Professor, University of Melbourne and co-editor of Victoria and the Great War) had kindly agreed to participate and to 'probe home front ferment in Melbourne’s western suburbs' but was unfortunately prevented by ill health from attending.

Prior to the seminar, participants celebrated the opening of a new exhibition, ‘A Nation Divided: the Great War and Conscription’, at the Old Treasury Building. The exhibition is open to the public throughout 2018.

The Making Public Histories series is offered jointly by the Monash University History Program, the History Council of Victoria and the Old Treasury Building. 

This event was fully subscribed. 


Images courtesy State Library Victoria.

Image courtesy State Library VictoriaImage courtesy State Library Victoria

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Image acknowledgements to go here.