Center for Australian and New Zealand Studies
Center for Australian and New Zealand Studies
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NEWSLETTER NO. 25         SPRING 2002


At their annual meeting, hosted in late February by the Center for Australian and New Zealand Studies at the Univ. of British Columbia in Vancouver, members of the Australian Studies Assoc. of North America (ASANA) voted to incorporate New Zealand Studies and adopt the somewhat more mysterious ANZSANA acronym (Australian & New Zealand Studies Assn. of North America).

Helping to signify this change, Barbara Peterson, Deputy High Commissioner for New Zealand in Ottawa, attended the meeting, as did Australia's High Commissioner in Ottaway, Tony Hely, together with David Korth from Canada's Department of Foreign and International Trade, which provided a grant that enabled graduate students to attend the meeting and present papers.

The Vancouver meeting was one of the association's largest, with some eighty scholars and students attending.  Among them was Prof. Henry Albinski, who helped found the association when he headed the former Penn State Center for Australian & New Zealand Studies, and who is now at Sydney University.  Two dozen papers were presented, one of the most memorable by an unabased Kiwi enthusiast, Roger Boshier, who gloated, in proper scholarly terms, about New Zealand's triumphs over Australia in America's Cup competitions.

Among other meeting highlights was a showing of the feature film Without Prejudice, which gives a moving account of the national deliberative poll on Aboriginal Reconciliation that Dr. Pam Ryan and her Issues Deliberation Australia organization mounted, with the help of UT's Center for Deliberative Polling and the Clark Center, in February 2001.  Numerous ANZSANA viewers said that the film is one of the best examinations of relations between Australia's Europeans and indigenous peoples that they have seen.

Two UT Ph.D. students affiliated with the Clark Center gave well-received papers on how international treaties and conventions impinge on Australian politics (Rhonda Case Evans) and how Australia's legal fraternity interacts with the High Court and senior judiciary (Jason Pierce).  Also presenting papers and participating in discussions were Clark Center faculty affiliates Laurence Chalip, Chris Green, Roy Mersky, and Ross Terrill.  Working with Richard Teare and Grace Tompkins, at the Georgetown Center for Australian and New Zealand Studies, Dr. Higley and Frances Cushing, the Clark Center's executive assistant, helped ANZSANA president Hoyt Edge, and UBC hosts Dr. Wes Pue and Kathrine Richardson organize the meeting.

The next ANZSANA meeting will take place at Arcadia University in Chestnut Hill, a suburb of Philadelphia, February 21-22, 2003, where John Wells and his staff will serve as hosts.

Message from the Director
The Clark Center has been consolidating its coverage of New Zealand this spring.  In early April, for example, the Center collaborated with the UT History Dept. to host a week-long visit by Prof. Jamie Belich, from the University of Auckland, and his wife Margaret.  A leading historian of New Zealand and Pacific Rim settlement and economic development, Belich presented papers on these topics to the History Dept. and to a packed British Studies faculty seminar.  The Center took advantage of Belich's presence to hold a dinner for its twenty faculty affiliates and graduate students who are not in the Antipodes this spring.

Study abroad programs in Australia continue to bulk large in Center activities.  Australia has now displaced the UK as the #1 destination of UT students going on such programs.  During the year surrounding the Sydney Olympics, students enrolling in Australian universities jumped by more than 100 percent, from 25 in 1999-2000 to 58 in 2000-01, while four students inaugurated our new exchange program with New Zealand universities.

In this study abroad vein, the mammoth annual meeting of the North American Foreign Studies Assn. (NAFSA) are this year taking place just down the road from us, in San Antonio at the end of May.  Tony Crooks, the new AEO head in Washington, has invited Center participation, and we'll take him up on that.  As well, a large number of study abroad officers from Australian universities appear to be headed toward Austin immediately before and after the San Antonio extravaganza.

I was in Canberra during our Spring Break and I met with a number of people interested in the Australia-Texas connection: Ambassador Schieffer and his USIS staff, Mark Darby at the Fulbright Foundation, Peter Shannon and Sue Jorgensen at DFAT, and a variety of academics at ANU.  Best of all, I learned that Penny Amberg, a friend and staunch supporter of Australian Studies on this side of the water when she was cultural affairs officer at the Washington Embassy, is now back in DFAT harness as Head of its Cultural Affairs Division.  This is to put Penny on notice that we'll all be trooping to her door very soon.

          John Higley





US Ambassador Schieffer to Speak at UT
J. Thomas Schieffer, President Bush's Ambassador to Australia, will deliver the Commencement Address to UT's Department of Government this year.  Since his appointment at the end of July, 2001, Ambassador Schieffer has helped orchestrate US and Australian undertakings in Afghanistan, the Middle East, and the critical Southeast Asia region.  He has also played a key role in ameliorating the dispute between Canberra and Washington over US steel tariffs.

A Fort Worth native, Schieffer attended UT from 1966-1970, graduating with Honors in Government.  He then earned an M.A. in international relations from the LBJ School of Public Affairs in 1972.  That year, at the age of 25, he was elected to the Texas House of Representatives, where he served three terms while also studying at the UT Law School for his L.L.B.  In 1979, he launched a highly successful business law practiced focused on the oil and gas sector.


Austin-Adelaide:  The Social Work Connection
UT's School of Social Work is in the third year of a partnership with the School of Social Administration and Social Work at Flinders University in Adelaide.  During each of these years, a pair of UT Social Work students have completed their final internships at Flinders.

Social Work student internships involve 540 hours of work in a human service organizations.  In Adelaide so far, UT students have worked in community mental health units, hospitals, loss and grief organizations, and a Mission that helps the homeless and deals with domestic violence and family relations.  Kimberly Durham, a UT graduate and participant in the program, comments that "Having the opportunity to explore a country's history, culture, social service agencies, and people is priceless.  Sitting with a 90-year-old Aboriginal elder every Friday, and listening to the stories of her life, her struggles as part of the Stolen Generation, and her family is an experience that cannot be duplicated."

The UT-Flinders partnership has its genesis in a Spring 1999 encounter between Prof. James Barber, from Flinders, and Dr. Jane Kretzschmar, Director of Social Work Field Education at UT.  That summer, two UT students who were looking for international internships worked in Adelaide under the direction of the Flinders Field Education Director, Sue Maywald.  With seven UT students expressing interest in the program for Spring 2003, the Austin-Adelaide connection is flourishing. 

"Bringing Australia to Your Classroom"
Some forty Texas public school teachers attended a day-long workshop with this title in the Bush Presidential Museum Complex at Texas A&M University on January 26th.  Prof. Sarah Bednarz, in A&M's Department of Geography, was the workshop's primary organizer.

Four broad Australian areas were canvassed:  Migration, Natural Hazards, Global Interdependency, and an overview of Australia's People, Resources, Environments, and Society.  Presentations addressed the needs of teachers in several grade levels, especially when teaching about contemporary world cultures, world history and geography, and US history.  The educators attending the workshop were provided with two CD-ROMs, information about an IMAX film focusing on Australia, and several lesson plans for covering Australian topics in ways that meet state and national classroom standards.

The A&M workshop was funded partly my a grant that Dr. Higley and John Wells (former AEO director in Washington) obtained from DETYA and that was administered by the Clark Center.  Prof. Ross Terrill, a scholar affiliated with the Center, and Jason Pierce, a UT Government Ph.D. student working on Australian legal matters, made the drive from UT to Texas A&M to give the workshop presentations.

Information about the workshop can be found at or by emailing Prof. Bednarz:


Notes from our Yacker "European Bureau Chief", Robert Ross
"All is going well here, and springtime is arriving.  Unlike Texas, the landscape changes radically.  I have set out pansies on our balcony, pansies being the regulation flower this time of year in Germany, followed by petunias, then geraniums.  There is undoubtedly a law somewhere determining the date for the planting of flowers.  Our catsitter is rather nosy, very German sort, who rearranges our apartment, readjusts the heat, vacuums regularly, and over waters our plants, but takes excellent care of the cats on her twice-a-day visits.  Anyway, she told us that it is illegal in Germany to have cats declawed, which is the case with our cats -- the only way to save upholstery from total destruction.  I trust she won't report us to the authorities.  She also informed us that we should not leave potatoes out in the light but should put them in cool, dark places.  I have concluded that underneath the "New Democratic Germany" the traditional Prussian ways still prevail.  All very interesting and amusing when one is an outsider, but I fear it would be oppressive in the long run.  I am rereading Thomas Mann's "Buddenbrooks", which seems quite up to date even though it is set in the 19th century.  I understand the novel much better this time around, twenty years later.

We spent a week in London in March and took day trips to Stratford-Upon-Avon and dutifully visitied the Shakespeare shrines in the pouring rain, and to Cardiff (in "Old South Wales").  We planned to go to Swansea from Cardiff in honor of Dylan Thomas, but in typical British fashion, the train failed to materialize, so we went back to London when the London train finally rattled into the station amid billows of black smoke.  The British rail system has become disastrous in recent years.  Wales is rather depressing -- and depressed, I would think.  It is on to Brugge for Ascension Day and the "Procession of the Holy Blood" which dates from medieval times and is focused on a piece of Jesus' shroud that found its way to Belgium.  How, I can't imagine!"  Aachen, Germany.  


Frank Moorhouse to Teach at UT
Professor Don Graham, who regularly teaches a course on Australian Literature and Film at UT, has invited the Australian writer, Frank Moorhouse, to teach in the Dept. of English during the coming fall semester.  The author of The Americans, Baby, Conferenceville, and numerous other books, including his recent publication, Dark Palace. Moorhouse is one of Australia's best-known novelists.  He will be in residence at UT and contactable through the Center from late August until mid-December.

Recent Publications
Greg Brown. 2002. "Political Bigamy: Dual Citizenship in Australia's Migrant Communities." People and Place 10 (1): 71-77.


YACKER Is published in the fall & spring by The Edward A. Clark Center for Australian & New Zealand Studies,
Harry Ransom Center 3.362
The University of Texas, Austin, TX 78713-7219
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This Newsletter was not printed with state funds.

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