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Melbourne 2018

Recording, Narrating and Archiving the First World War

Monday, 9 July 2018 to Wednesday, 11 July 2018

Melbourne, Deakin Downtown, Melbourne CBD


Call for Papers and Bursaries

Following the success of the Oxford conference in November 2016, we are delighted to announce that the 10th conference of the International Society for First World Studies will be held in Melbourne, Australia – our first to be held in the southern hemisphere!

We are thrilled that Professor Joan Beaumont of the Australian National University, Professor Michael Roper of the University of Essex and the eminent Australian archivist of First World War records, Michael Pigott AM, School of Information Studies, Charles Sturt University, will be keynote speakers.

We are also very pleased to announce the availability of a limited number of bursaries to attend ‘Recording, Narrating and Archiving the First World War’.

Post-graduates and early career researchers (within five years of PhD graduation) who have had their papers accepted for the conference will be eligible for the bursaries.

Successful applicants will attend a post-graduate/ECR workshop on Monday 9 July, where they will be mentored by senior academics about the publication of an article or book chapter stemming from their research. They will also receive free registration for the conference on 10-11 July.

We will provide more details about the application process once the Call for Papers has closed on 30 September 2017 and outcomes have been finalised.


The ways in which contemporaries recorded the First World War have inevitably shaped the kinds of histories we have produced over the last century.  The war was being recorded and archived as it happened – and for decades after – for particular reasons and particular purposes.  The processes of recording and archiving have bequeathed in different times and places alternately a very rich, very partial, and very prejudiced record of conflict and its legacies.
This conference revisits the creation, recreation and transmission of knowledge about the war, especially in comparative and transnational frames.  It encourages analysis of media presentations of the war during and after the fighting, the place of official and unofficial historians, networks of private knowledge, the development of oral histories, the work of family historians, collectors, archivists, curators and librarians, in order to understand how the war has been reconceptualised over time, and how the records of war facilitate or inhibit new perspectives.

Potential themes for conference panels and presentations are:

o Production, preservation and transmission of the records of war over time
o Archives, museums and the shaping of a record of war
o Military analyses and uses of the First World War
o Press, propaganda and the record of war
o Official and unofficial representations of war
o Family history and intergenerational transmission of the war
o Creating and accessing knowledge of war in a digital era 
o Recording and archiving the centenary
o Fiction, film and popular consumption of the war

Submission Guidelines

Presenters are expected to submit 3000-word papers for distribution prior to the conference and will deliver twenty-minute papers at the conference, to be followed by discussion. Proposals should be approximately 300 words in length. Applications should also be accompanied by a short biographical statement. Panel proposals are welcome.

The working language of the conference and all submissions is English. The organisers intend to publish an edited collection from selected presentations.

Submission Email Address:
Closing Date for Submissions:
30 September 2017

Conference Venue

Deakin Downtown, 2 Collins Square, 727 Collins Street, Melbourne

Organising Committee

  • Julia Smart

  • Committee Member
  • Monash University