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2015: Professor Jennifer Clark

Historical narrative, scholarly article and blog: Yours faithfully: Writing letters for the Council for Aboriginal Rights, 1952–61

The papers of the Council for Aboriginal Rights (CAR) are one of the most important national resources for understanding recent Aboriginal history and the pursuit of civil rights. Melbourne University science alumnus Shirley Andrews was its honorary secretary between 1952 and 1961.

Professor Jennifer Clark's Redmond Barry Fellowship project examined the first 10 years of CAR through the lens of Shirley Andrews' rich and revealing letters. While the papers reflect the thinking within CAR and record its actions, they also demonstrate the importance of the letter as a mechanism to build networks and reach a wide audience. The letters also shine light on the enormous contribution CAR's secretary made to the cause.

Professor Jennifer Clark is a historian and researcher who is currently Executive Director of Teaching and Learning Support at the University of New England and Professor of History. She holds a BA (Hons I, University Medal), PhD in History and a Dip Ed from University of Sydney. Jennifer has worked as a history academic at the University of New England for most of her career, and since 2009 has served in university management roles around teaching and learning.

She is widely published, with two monographs, two edited books, 10 book chapters, 28 refereed journal articles, non-refereed articles, conference papers and over 100 media interviews, including a Compass program, an Encounter program and a Sixty Minutes story.