Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Pacific Colonial Shadow: New Approaches

On Friday 19 August the UQ Anthropology Museum will open an exhibition on Solomon Islands, “Solomon Islands: Re-enchantment and the Colonial Shadow” curated by Dr Diana Young, director of the museum, in collaboration with Solomon Islands scholars including Emeritus Professor Clive Moore, Dr Graham Baines and Associate Professor Annie Ross. The brief for the exhibition is that the “show is based on Chakrabarty’s call for narratives that are non-temporal and non -modern to think outside the dominant (European and Australian) approach to European history.” To coincide with this exhibition, the UQ Solomon Islands Partnership and the School of Historical and Philosophical Studies at The University of Queensland presents two days of seminars.

For more information, click here

Three exhibitions celebrating Pacific cultures

To celebrate Pacific culture and the Asia Pacific Triennial at QAGOMA (Queensland Gallery of Modern Art), Moreton Bay Regional Council Art Gallery Network has curated three exhibitions:

Vai Niu Wai Niu Coconut Water
Caboolture Regional Art Gallery
27 November 2015 – 24 February 2016

Samoa Tula’i… Samoa Arise!
Caboolture Regional Art Gallery
27 November 2015 – 24 February 2016

Pine Rivers Art Gallery
26 November 2015 – 23 January 2016


Counter Networks of Empire

Reading Unexpected People in Unexpected Places
Convenors:  Tracey Banivanua Mar and Nadia Rhook

Friday 6 November, 2015, 10:00–5:30  La Trobe University Franklin St City Campus, 215 Franklin St, Melbourne.

Counter Networks of Empire copy

In the last decade, scholars have illuminated the ways Empires, particularly of the nineteenth century were founded on and maintained by networks of people, goods, and ideas. This symposium stretches, perhaps challenges, the ‘imperial networks’ framework. Participants are invited to shine a spotlight on networks that ran counter to the well-documented imperial ones established by settlers, planters, missionaries and government officials that spread across, within and around the Pacific world. These might include networks, for instance, between Indigenous peoples and people of colour, who may have been suppressed, ignored, or reviled by those who penned nineteenth century archives. Speakers will explore transoceanic, transborder or transcolonial alliances, lateral connections, solidarities, and resistance movements, variously formed out of sight, in the peripheral vision, or at times, in full-frontal view of imperial and colonial powers. How have counter networks formed, mobilized, and mattered in the imperial past and the ‘post’colonial present? What were the connections made by people in transit, and can we read into this any kind of lasting, fleeting or contingent impacts?

Keynote: Alan Lester
Speakers: Tracey Banivanua Mar; Tony Birch; Keith Camacho; Liz Conor; Penny Edmonds; Nadia Rhook; Damon Salesa; Sophie Loy-Wilson

Please RSVP to: or

Mobile Branding: Creating Consumer-Citizens across the Caribbean and Pacific

The forthcoming Joel Kahn Anthropology Lecture 2015 is on the topic of Mobile Branding: Creating Consumer-Citizens across the Caribbean and Pacific

Thursday, 24 September, Melbourne
6pm, La Trobe University, Bundoora campus, ELT 3

Presented by: Associate Professor Heather Horst (RMIT University)

The growth of the mobile phone use around the world has corresponded with an increase in advertising for new mobile telecommunications services and a range of promotions and sponsorships. From billboards, signs and radio jingles to branded t-shirts, bags and umbrellas, advertisements and other branding strategies are designed to develop demand for an evolving suite of mobile-enabled services, often by drawing aesthetic connections between mobile companies and local, national and global senses of belonging. This talk compares the development of mobile telecommunications branding by one company – Digicel Ltd –  in the Caribbean and Pacific and their efforts to create consumer-citizens across these contexts. Combining attention to the semiotics of advertising with the reactions to these branding strategies by users, I suggest that being and creating a mobile phone consumer cannot be understood outside the broader state-company relationships that shape the global telecommunications landscape.

Associate Professor Heather Horst is Director, Research Partnerships in the College of Design and Social Context and the Founding Director of the School of Media and Communication at RMIT University. Her research focuses upon understanding how digital media, technology and other forms of material culture mediate relationships, communication, learning, mobility and our sense of being human. Her books examining these themes include The Cell Phone: An Anthropology of Communication (Horst and Miller, Berg, 2006), Hanging Out, Messing Around and Geeking Out: Kids Living and Learning with Digital Media  (Ito, et al. 2010, MIT Press),  Digital Anthropology (Horst and Miller, Eds., 2012, Berg) and Digital Ethnography: Principles and Practices (Pink, Horst, et al. Forthcoming, Sage).  Her current research, supported by the Australian Research Council and an EU Horizon 20/20 grant, explores transformations in the telecommunications industry and the emergence of new mobile media practices across the Asia-Pacific region.

PNG 40th Anniversary National Film and Sound Archive Events

PNG 40th anniversary at the NFSA - activity programAustralians have long crossed the Torres Strait to make films in Papua New Guinea. Between 1906 and 1975, the territories of Papua and New Guinea were Australian protectorates, and cinema played an important role in promoting the colonial agenda to an audience at home and abroad.

In the 1930s, gold prospectors penetrated the highland areas of central New Guinea with maps and bulky 35mm camera equipment only to find a population of one million people living in its mountainous valleys. Following the Pacific War, Australians were increasingly keen to learn more about their northern neighbours and the Film Australia Collection provides a unique insight into the history of PNG at this time through the lens of the government filmmaker.

In the early 1970s, a new generation of young, politically aware Australian filmmakers arrived in PNG to document the extraordinary period of change preceding independence in 1975.

To mark the 40th anniversary of independence, the National Film and Sound Archive are presenting a season of films from all these eras, including significant Australian filmmakers and historians to personally present these films and discuss their historical, social and political context, including Michael Waterhouse, Gary Kildea, Andrew Pike, Les McLaren and Bob Connolly.

National Film and Sound Archive Website

PNG 40th anniversary at the NFSA – activity program