Professor Amanda Nettelbeck FASSA FAHA

Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences

Professor Amanda Nettelbeck

Areas of expertise: Australian history; Indigenous history; British imperialism and comparative settler colonialism; colonial law and policing; colonial violence and its afterlives; humanitarian governance; historical memory and memorialization

HDR Supervisor accreditation status: Full

ORCID ID: 0000-0001-7099-6075


Location: ACU Melbourne Campus

Amanda Nettelbeck is a Professor in the Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences, Australian Catholic University. Her research centres on the history and memory of colonial violence, Indigenous/settler relations, and the legal governance of Indigenous peoples. She is author, co-author or co-editor of numerous books, including most recently Indigenous Rights and Colonial Subjecthood (Cambridge 2019), Intimacies of Violence in the Settler Colony (co-edited with Penelope Edmonds, Palgrave 2018), Violence, Colonialism and Empire in the Modern World (co-edited with Philip Dwyer, Palgrave 2017), and Fragile Settlements (co-authored with Russell Smandych et al, UBC Press 2016). She is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, and of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia.


Books and edited books

Selected book chapters and refereed journal articles of the last 10 years


Australian Research Council funded projects

  • ARC Discovery Project, 'Envisaging Australian Citizenship’, 2020-2023 (DP200100088), $501,000. Co-CI.
  • ARC Linkage Project, 'Reconciling with the Frontier', 2020-2023 (LP190100561), $353,000. Co-CI.
  • ARC Discovery Project, 'Intimacy and Violence in Anglo Pacific Rim Settler Colonial Societies, 1830-1930', 2015-2018 (DP150100914), $500,137. Co-CI.
  • ARC LIEF Project, ‘Australasian Legal History Library II’, 2015 (LE150100051), $410,000. Co-CI.
  • ARC Discovery Project, 'Protection & Punishment: the Legal Reform of Indigenous People, Australia 1837-1911'. 2014-2016 (DP140103049), $164, 130. Sole CI.
  • ARC LIEF Project, ‘Australian Legal History Library’, 2012 (LE150100051), $330,000. Co-CI.
  • ARC Discovery Project, 'The Rule of Law in History and Memory: Australian and Canadian Settler Frontiers', 2010-2012 (DP 1095363), $195,000. Co-CI.
  • ARC Linkage Project, 'Frontier Conflict in History and Memory’, 2005-2007 (LP0560550), $210,000. Co-CI.

Accolades and awards

  • 2020, Winner, ANZLHS Annual Prize in Legal History for Indigenous Rights and Colonial Subjecthood (Cambridge, 2019)
  • 2018, Winner, Australia & New Zealand Law and Society Association Prize for 'Creating the Aboriginal Vagrant', Pacific Historical Review 1 (2018)
  • 2018, Shortlisted, Australian Historical Studies Patricia Grimshaw Prize for 'Proximate Strangers and Familiar Antagonists', Australian Historical Studies 2 (2016)
  • 2008, Honourable Mention, John Barrett Awards for Australian Studies for 'Practices of Violence/Myths of Creation', Journal of Australian Studies 1 (2008)
  • 2008, Shortlisted, Chief Minister's Northern Territory History Book Award for In the Name of the Law (Wakefield, 2007)
  • 2002, Winner, John Tragenza National Community History Award for Fatal Collisions (Wakefield, 2001)
  • 2002, Shortlisted, NSW Premier's Award (non-fiction) for Fatal Collisions (Wakefield, 2001)

Appointments and affiliations

  • Keith Cameron Chair in Australian History, University College Dublin (2018)
  • Vice-President and Executive Committee, Australian & New Zealand Law and History Society
  • Executive Committee, Australian Historical Association
  • Executive Committee, International Association of Australian Studies
  • Adjunct member, Purai Global Indigenous and Diaspora Research Centre, University of Newcastle
  • Adjunct member, Research Centre for the Study of Violence, University of Newcastle
  • Member, Public Law and Policy Research Unit, University of Adelaide
  • Board member, Libraries Board of South Australia
  • ARC College of Experts (2020-2023)

Editorial roles

  • Editorial board, Australian Historical Studies
  • Editorial board, law & history
  • Editorial board, Australian History series, Anthem Press

Public engagement

  • 2020 Roundtable on ‘Reconciling with Contested Histories’, hosted by the Australian Embassy to Ireland, Dublin
  • 2019 Annual Norman Tindale Memorial Lecture, hosted by the Royal Anthropological Society of SA
  • 2019 Tom Stannage Memorial Lecture and Masterclass, hosted by the Australian Studies Institute, WA
  • 2018 ANZAC Day Dawn Service Address, Grangegorman Military Cemetery, hosted by the Australian Embassy to Ireland, Dublin
  • 2018 ‘Oxford Talks’ series speaker, hosted by All Souls College, Oxford
  • 2017 Australian & New Zealand Law & History Society Keynote Address (theme ‘Legal and Social Change’), Christchurch, New Zealand.
  • 2017 Plenary panel on ‘Violence and Persecution, Australian Academy of the Humanities 48th annual symposium.
  • 2016 ‘Research Tuesdays’ Public Lecture (theme: ‘Colonial violence and the limits of the law’), hosted by the University of Adelaide.
  • 2016 ‘Talking History’ Public Lecture, hosted by History Trust SA
  • Adelaide Festival Writers’ Week panel chair (1996-2017)
  • Judging panel, Voss Literary Awards (2014-2016)
  • Judging panel, South Australian Premier’s Awards (2001-2012)

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