Browsing All Posts filed under »History«

PODCAST: Interview with Prof Judith Brett — ‘Fair Share: Country and City in Australia’

June 24, 2012 by

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BY BEN HABIB. In this podcast I am joined in conversation with Professor Judith Brett, Head of School in the School of Social Sciences at La Trobe University, to discuss her Quarterly Essay entitled Fair Share: Country and City in Australia. In our discussion, Judy interprets some of my observations and experiences growing up and living in regional areas, in the context of the themes of her essay. Topics covered in our discussion include the brain drain from the country to the city, efforts to attract skilled personnel to regional centres, the urban-rural culture clash, intellectual capital and bigotry, along with politics, multiculturalism and environmental issues in country Australia.

PODCAST: Korea — A Divided Nation

May 8, 2012 by

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BY BEN HABIB. On Monday 7th May 2012, I delivered a guest lecture entilted Korea: A Fractured Nation to second and third year students studying the subject Contemporary Politics of the Asia-Pacific Region (POL2/3CPA) at La Trobe University's Melbourne campus. The content of this lecture, along with other lectures in this subject, will form the basis for an international conflict negotiation simulation workshop structured around a hypothetical security crisis on the Korean peninsula.

LTU-WSSC Year 10 Workshop: Migration and Refugees Reference Page

May 1, 2012 by


On Friday 11th May 2012, year 10 students from Wodonga Senior Secondary College will be participating in excursions related to their studies on refugees to the Bonegilla Migrant Experience and workshops at La Trobe University Albury-Wodonga campus. This page has been established as a resource for WSSC students to prepare for and debrief after their excursions on May 11th.

ANZAC Day Redux: Refining My Position

April 26, 2012 by


BY BEN HABIB. Thank you to everyone who responded to my previous blog posting Anzac Day: Poignant Remembrance or Mythologisation. Your constructive (and not so constructive) comments and criticisms have helped me to further explore my thoughts on ANZAC Day and reach a more nuanced position.

Anzac Day: Poignant Remembrance or Mythologisation?

April 24, 2012 by


BY BEN HABIB. Australia has a complicated national story. We do no justice to any of the protagonists in this epic tale by leaving out portions of the story or inventing myths to obfuscate its darker moments. I feel sorry for the people who cannot ponder the Galipoli story in all of its complexity. On April 25th, I choose to remember the humanity of those who lost their lives at Galipoli, rather than the excesses of the politicised mythology that has become their unfortunate legacy.

Living Lightly: Reciprocal Bonds and the Trust Horizon

April 23, 2012 by


BY BEN HABIB. One of the exiting aspects of living lightly is the opportunity it provides for community building and connecting with other people. Strong social networks will become increasingly important as we grapple with environmental problems, energy insecurity and financial turmoil at the end of the age of growth. As a specialist in international relations, I look to Chinese culture for ideas on building social cohesion during tough times.

Mao Zedong and the Chinese Communist Party: Presentation to Victory Lutheran College VCE History Class

March 2, 2012 by


BY BEN HABIB. On Thursday March 1st, 2012, braving torrential rain, Victory Lutheran College VCE history students, led by their teacher Logan Hayward came to La Trobe University Albury-Wodonga campus for a workshop presented by myself on Mao Zedong and the Communist Party. The workshop was a supplement to the students' VCE History studies on the Chinese revolution.

Immanuel Wallerstein on the 2011 world revolution and the crisis of capitalism

February 15, 2012 by

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A must watch: In this presentation, American world systems theorist Immanuel Wallerstein compares the world revolution of 2011-? to that of 1968 and places both within broader perspective of 500 years of global capitalism. What are your thoughts?

PHOTO ESSAY: Fángchuān — Where China, North Korea and Russia Converge

February 1, 2012 by

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BY BEN HABIB. Some unusual places in the world are magnets for geopolitical intrigue. Fángchuān is one of these places, nestled at the convergence of the Chinese, Russian and North Korean borders on the Tumen River.

PHOTO ESSAY: Porto, Fading Jewel of Portugal

January 30, 2012 by


BY BEN HABIB. In August 2011 I had the pleasure of visiting the city of Porto, Portugal's second largest city. The old city of Porto, on the north bank of the Douro River, is a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) world heritage site that is home to some breathtaking architecture harking back to heyday of the Portuguese empire in the sixteenth century. Today, Porto is a bustling tourist centre catering to visitors predominantly from cooler climes of northern Europe and the home of FC Porto, one of European football's most successful clubs. The beauty of the city is matched by the charm and sophistication of the people who live in it.

What is Australia Day really about?

January 25, 2012 by


BY BEN HABIB. What is Australia Day all about? Like many people, I am increasingly disturbed that our national holiday is becoming more of a drunken orgy for flag-waving rednecks than an opportunity for Australians to appreciate our national story in all its complexity. In raising a number of questions about Australia Day, I challenge you to think more deeply about the Australian national story and what it means to be an Australian.

EVENT REVIEW: Border History Teachers Network dinner forum – Keynote address by Dr Bruce Pennay

November 15, 2011 by


BY LISA TUCK & MARTIN DICKENS. The Border History Teachers’ Network successfully hosted its’ third Dinner Forum on Friday 11th November 2011. The keynote address entitled Taking in Strangers: The Reception of Post-War Immigrants was delivered by Dr Bruce Pennay from Charles Sturt University. Dr Pennay concludes that Bonegilla deserves recognition as a location of national and international significance.

Hyper-nationalism, Contested Histories & the China-Japan Relationship

October 14, 2011 by

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BY SEANIAD CONROY. Both China and Japan have accused each other of encouraging fierce nationalism and the corresponding anti- Chinese and anti-Japanese feeling. Their failure to address the past has meant that it is an ongoing divisive issue in the present, though some attempts are being made to rectify this.

PODCAST: A Window into Contemporary Indian Society

September 30, 2011 by


Politics students at La Trobe University participated in a workshop on key issues in contemporary Indian society with Dr Peter Friedlander from La Trobe University in Melbourne, who discussed regional identity in India, and Simmi Kaur from Wodonga Senior Secondary College, who talked about changes in modern Indian society.

Wodonga Senior Secondary College and Latrobe University: Social Movements Day

September 20, 2011 by


WSSC teachers Simon Webb and Simmi Kaur teamed up with Ben Habib from La Trobe University to present ‘Social Movements Day’ at the La Trobe University Albury-Wodonga campus. The WSSC students’ multimedia presentations on twentieth century social movements were screened in the main lecture theatre, followed by a university-style tutorial class where WSSC students participated in a series of activities in small groups led by undergraduate LTU students from the Bachelor of Arts program. The activities were based on the themes of life at university, different types of thinking skills, and reflection on twentieth century social movements.

PODCAST: History Study Companion — The Chinese Revolution

July 31, 2011 by


BY BEN HABIB. Welcome to Our Voice: Politics Albury-Wodonga's audio study companion series on the Chinese Revolution, a compliment to Units 3 & 4 of the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) year 12 History curriculum. The series spans the period from 1836 to the present day, introducing the important events, key players, influential ideas and central themes surrounding the Chinese revolution, along with analysis of the historical background that led to the revolution as well as its legacy today.

EVENT REVIEW: Border History Teachers’ Network Dinner Forum

May 30, 2011 by


Border History Teachers Network Dinner Forum with keynote speaker Dr Ben Habib, on 'The North Korea Story: Confucius, Communism and the Bomb'. Includes mp3 audio of the presentation, photos from the evening and an event review by Martin Dickens.

PHOTO ESSAY: An Adventure in Goa, India

May 29, 2011 by


BY BEN HABIB. In 2007 my wife and I travelled to the former Portuguese colony of Goa, on the Arabian Sea coast of India. Goa is both India's smallest state and richest state, an accolade that arises from its popularity as an international holiday destination. It may be a cliche often repeated of India, but Goa is truly a feast for the senses. I hope this photo gallery can capture, in some small way, the magic that is Goa.

YOUTH VOICE: Analysing Max Weber — History, Culture and Capitalism

May 4, 2011 by


BY LISA TUCK. We are all products of our social and historical context. Max Weber, the German sociologist, believed the study of history is integral in understanding the lived experiences of other people and how their social, political and economic contexts came to influence their ideas. Weber lived during a period in which societies were greatly and rapidly transformed by the emergence of industrialism, and at a time when the great European powers struggled for world mastery.

PHOTO ESSAY: The Old Wodonga Rail Line

April 29, 2011 by

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BY BEN HABIB. I took some time over the Easter break to go for a walk along the decommissioned railway line that bisects the city of Wodonga. The new railway bypass through Gateway Island, north of Wodonga, represents the end of on era. The land on which the decommissioned railway now sits is slated for redevelopment, including a revitalisation of the Wodonga CBD and the installation of a linear park and bikeway. With that in mind, I took the opportunity to stroll along the old rail corridor and take some photographs of the area before the redevelopment begins.

WEEKLY DISPATCH: The Evolution of Liberal-Democracy, Part I — Absolutism, Feudalism and the Road to Revolution

April 6, 2011 by


BY BEN HABIB. The popular uprisings presently aflame across the Middle East give one pause to consider the hardiness and stability of Australia’s political system. The relative stability of our political system belies the fact that its ideological roots stem from a grand compromise, a centuries-long project by European, American and Australian political elites to manage the politics of socio-economic inequality and avoid the extremes of revolutionary social unrest. This is the project of liberal democracy.

PODCAST: An Interview with Bruce Pennay — The Role of the Border Region in Our National Story

November 10, 2010 by


On this podcast, Our Voice: Politics Albury-Wodonga is privileged to talk local history with Professor Bruce Pennay OAM. Bruce Pennay is an Adjunct Professor in the School of Environmental Sciences at Charles Sturt University, Thurgoona Campus. In a fascinating discussion, Bruce takes us back in time to examine some key periods of local history with great significance to the story of Australia: the gold rush, federation, and the post-World War II migrant influx—in which we touch on the border region’s rich migrant history, antagonistic water politics dating back to the 19th century, and much more.