Photo of Professor Susan Broomhall

Professor Susan Broomhall FAHA

Gender and Women's History Research Centre

Areas of expertise: women and gender; emotions; science, technologies, and knowledge practices; agricultural and environmental practices; material culture; cultural contact and global encounters; heritage of the early modern world

ORCID ID: 0000-0002-6018-5743


Location: ACU Melbourne Campus

Susan Broomhall leads the Gender and Women's History Research Centre in the Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences. She is the author of numerous monographs and edited collections. Her current research includes a study of narratives of Korean women from the time of the Japanese invasions in the late sixteenth century; women’s activities and the role of gender ideologies in shaping experiences in the Dutch East India Company; understanding turbulent social and physical systems in historical activity, especially in health and environmental events; women’s activities and the role of gender ideologies in early modern natural research management regarding forests and waterways in particular; and women’s participation in agricultural innovations since the early modern period.

Select publications

  • Gender and the Dutch East India Company (Amsterdam UP, contracted.)
  • Glove Cultures in Early Modern England, with James Daybell (Amsterdam UP, contracted)
  • Transformation and Agency: Narratives of Korean Women, 1550-1700 (ARC Humanities Press, contracted)
  • The Identities of Catherine de’ Medici (Brill, 2021)
  • Dynastic Colonialism: Gender, Materiality and the Early Modern House of Orange-Nassau, with Jacqueline Van Gent (Routledge, 2016)
  • Gender, Power and Identity in the and the Early Modern House of Orange-Nassau, with Jacqueline Van Gent (Routledge, 2016)
  • Police Courts in Nineteenth-Century Scotland, Volume 1: Magistrates, Media and the Masses, with David Barrie (Ashgate/Routledge, 2014) (winner of the Frank Watson Prize for the Best Book in Scottish History)
  • Police Courts in Nineteenth-Century Scotland, Volume 2: Boundaries, Behaviours and Bodies, with David Barrie (Ashgate/Routledge, 2014) (winner of the Frank Watson Prize for the Best Book in Scottish History)
  • Interpreting Early Modern Women in the Low Countries: Feminizing Sources and Interpretations of the Past, with Jenny Spinks (Ashgate, 2011)
  • Women and Religion in Sixteenth-Century France (Palgrave, 2006)
  • Women's Medical Work in Early Modern France (Manchester UP, 2004)
  • Women and the Book Trade in Sixteenth-Century France (Ashgate/Routledge, 2002)

Selected projects

  • ARC Discovery, ‘A History of Natural Resource Management,’ 2021-2023.
  • Academy of Korean Studies, Korea Research Centre, 2020-2025, with Joanna Elfving-Hwang, Sam Han, Nicola Fraschini, Foundation Chief Investigator.
  • ARC Discovery, 'Gendering the Italian Wars, 1494-1559', with Carolyn James, Lisa Mansfield, 2018-2020.
  • ARC Future Fellow, 'Emotions of Power: Strategic affection in the correspondence of Catherine de Medici,' 2013-2020.
  • Department of Environment and Energy, 'Rivers of Emotion - An Emotional History of the Swan & Canning Rivers,' with Gina Pickering, 2012.
  • ARC Centre of Excellence, 'Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions,' with Philippa Maddern, Jane Davidson, Andrew Lynch, Robert White, Yasmin Haskell, David Lemmings, Stephanie Trigg, Charles Zika, Peter Holbrook, Juanita Ruys, Jacqueline Van Gent, Shino Konishi, Paul Gibbard, 2011-2017.
  • ARC Discovery, 'Gender, Power and Identity in the Early Modern Nassau Family,' with Jacqueline Van Gent, Susie Protschky, Michaela Hohkamp, 2010-2013.
  • ARC Discovery, 'Reading the Signs Disaster Apocalypse & Demonology in European Print Culture 1450 to 1700,' with Charles Zika, Jenny Spinks, 2009-2013.
  • Office of Learning and Teaching (ALTC), 'Articulating lifelong learning in Tourism: Dialogue between humanities scholars and travel providers,' with Tim Pitman, 2008.
  • ARC Linkage, 'Engaging with Place - An Interdisciplinary Framework for Place Based Research & Practice,' with Jeff Malpas, Joan Barclay Lloyd, John Griffiths, Christopher Wood, Australian Studying Abroad, 2007-2009.
  • ARC Discovery, 'Voicing the Welfare State: Experiences of the Sixteenth-Century French Poor,' 2006-2008.
  • ARC Special Research Initiatives, 'A Web-Based Humanities Image Database and Descriptive Catalogue for Academic, Industry and Community Application,' with Bronwyn Stocks, Richard Pannell, 2005-2006.
  • ARC Network, 'Network for Early European Research,' 2005-2009.
  • ARC Linkage, 'Household Strategies and Dynamics in England, 1400-1830,' with Pam Sharpe, Philippa Maddern, Stephanie Tarbin, Vanessa Harding, 2005-2007.
  • ARC Network, 'Research Development in Medieval and Early Modern European Social and Cultural Studies,' with Andrew Lynch, Philippa Maddern, Robert White, Pam Sharpe, Patricia Crawford, Anne Scott, David Tunley, Claire McIlroy, Yasmin Haskell, Toby Burrows, 2004.
  • ARC Discovery, 'Beyond The Family: Fragmented Relationships and Household Strategies in England 1400 - 1830,' with Philippa Maddern, Pam Sharpe, 2003-2007.
  • ARC Discovery/DECRA, 'Gender and the production of early modern French medicine,' 2002-2004.

Current editorial and advisory roles

  • Series Editor, Gender and Power in in the Premodern World, published by ARC Humanities Press.
  • Advisory Board: Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions.
  • Advisory Board: Centre for the Study of Emotions in Cross-Cultural Exchange, Croatia.
  • Editorial Board: Pakistan Journal of Historical Studies (Indiana UP).
  • Editorial Board: Early Modern French Studies (Taylor & Francis).
  • Editorial Board: Limina: A Journal of Historical and Cultural Studies (online)

Accolades and awards

  • CHASS Australia Prize for Distinctive Work, 2017
  • Frank Watson Prize for the Best Book in Scottish History, 2015-16
  • Fellow, Australian Academy of the Humanities, 2012
  • Society for the Social History of Medicine Essay Prize, 1999
  • Bibliographical Society of Australia and New Zealand Essay Prize, 1997

Grants and agency review

  • Humanities and Creative Arts panel for Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA).
  • Humanities and Social Sciences review panel of the Swedish Research Council's Research Environment Grants.

Public engagement

  • Exhibition research contributor, Bewogen Beeld: Op Zoek Naar Johan Maurits (Shifting Image: In Search of Johan Maurits) Mauritshuis, The Hague, 2018-19.
  • Researcher/presenter, Emotional histories: The Dutch in the Indian Ocean, Audio Guide for Travellers and Traders in the Indian Ocean World, Western Australian Museum, Fremantle, 2016-17.
  • Lead researcher, The Zest Festival, 2012-2016 (Winner of the CHASS Australia Prize for Distinctive Work, 2017)

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