In September 1940, the ship HMT Dunera arrived in Sydney carrying 2500 German and Austrian men, all anti-Nazi and mostly Jews, who had been transported from England not as refugees but as interned enemy aliens. The strange story of their incarceration, in camps at Hay and Tatura, has undiminished power to appall and inspire.
In this lecture, historian Emeritus Professor Ken Inglis gives a progress report on his research for a book about the 'Dunera boys', whom he recalls as an exotic band of teachers, fellow students and convivial companions at the University of Melbourne in the late 1940s. The youngest of the 'boys' are now in their mid-80s, but their extraordinary story is captured in rich verbal and visual documentary records.
Ken Inglis is Emeritus Professor of History at Australian National University. His books include The Stuart Case, This is the ABC, Whose ABC? and Sacred Places, winner of several awards including The Age Book of the Year and the NSW Premier's Literary Award in 1999.
This lecture was sponsored by the Jewish Museum of Australia and is part of the Making Public Histories series.