Jane Lydon

Professor, MA PhD ANU

  • The University of Western Australia (M204), 35 Stirling Highway, Room 1.19, Arts Building, Crawley campus

    6009 Perth


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Personal profile


My research centres upon Australia’s colonial past and its legacies in the present. I am interested in the ways that popular and especially visual culture has shaped ideas and debates about race, identity and culture that persist today. In particular, I am concerned with the history of Australia’s engagement with anti-slavery, humanitarianism, and ultimately human rights. I am exploring the social and political impact of emotions aroused by visual imagery, including their application in evoking antislavery discourse, in visualizing violence on the colonial frontier, and through magic lantern performances aiming to prompt social reform.

New and Noteworthy

Tjanara Goreng Goreng reviews Remembering the Myall Creek Massacre, edited by Jane Lydon & Lyndall Ryan


Living History with Matt McLachlan. Mat interviews Professor Jane Lydon about her new book, 'Remembering the Myall Creek Massacre', which sheds new light on one of the most infamous chapters of Australian colonial history.


Radio National Breakfast: Remembering the Myall Creek Massacre


Ten photos that changed how we see human rights


Teaching overview

UWA 2018-19 Coordinator:
• Looking for Australia (HIST2015)
• Thinking History (HIST2007)
• Eyewitness to the Past (HIST3016).


Cultural history of human rights, humanitarianism and empire

Australian Legacies of British Slavery

Australian colonial visual cultures

Cross-cultural history and its legacies

Heritage: the colonial past in the present

(Associate Partner) ‘Digital Heritage in Cultural Conflicts’, JPICultural Heritage, Digital Heritage, Led by Prof Gil Pasternak, Photographic History Research Centre, De Montfort University, UK.(€550,000, 2018-2020)

CI, ARC Learned Academies Special Project ‘'The future humanities workforce’, (Australian Academy of the Humanities, $306,500, 2017-2019)

CI ARC Discovery ‘Heritage in the Limelight: the magic lantern in Australia and the world’, (DP160102509, 2016-2018)

Roles and responsibilities

• Editorial Board, Reviews Editor, Australian Historical Studies (2018-2020)

• Council, Australian Academy of the Humanities, (2016-2019)

• Advisory Board, Limina: A Journal of Historical and Cultural Studies. Postgraduate-run. (2016-)
• Council, National Trust of Australia (Western Australia) (2016-)

• International Reference Group, Negotiating History, major research project on Sámi photography, the University of Bergen, Norway. (2013-2017)

• Advisory Board, Anthem Press, Series in Australian History (and General Advisory Board in Australian Studies) (2015-)

• Advisory Board, Bloomsbury Publishing Handbook Series, The Handbook of Photography Studies, Gil Pasternak (ed), London: Bloomsbury Publishing. (2015-)

• Editorial Board, History of Photography (2016-2018)

• Editorial Board, Cultural Studies Review (2013-)

• Editorial Board, Australasian Historical Archaeology

• Editorial Board, Journal of the Anthropological Society of South Australia

• Western Australian Representative, Australian Women's History Network (2013-)


  • Australian History
  • Photography
  • Emotions
  • Visual Culture
  • Humanitarianism
  • Human Rights

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

photography Social Sciences
narrative Social Sciences
human rights Social Sciences
philanthropy Social Sciences
history Social Sciences
beauty Social Sciences
empathy Social Sciences
colonization Social Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 2013 2019

Research Output 1999 2018

Colonial 'Blind Spots': Images of Australian Frontier Conflict

Lydon, J., 10 Dec 2018, In : Journal of Australian Studies. 42, 4, p. 409-427 29 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Editorial: Indigenous Photographies

Lydon, J. & Wanhalla, A., Aug 2018, In : History of Photography. 42, 3, p. 213-216 4 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Indigenous Peoples

Fantasy Islands: Photography, empathy, and Australia's detention archipelago

Lydon, J., 2018, Photography and Migration. Sheehan, T. (ed.). Abingdon,UK: Routledge, p. 100-114 15 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperChapter

cultural diversity

George Hamilton, the Bold and Dashing Bushman: The Politics of Colonial Compassion

Lydon, J., 1 Oct 2018, Foundational Fictions : In South Australian History. Collins, C. & Sendziuk, P. (eds.). South Australia: Wakefield Press, p. 79-96 18 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperChapter

Introduction: Visualising Human Rights

Lydon, J. (ed.), 1 Oct 2018, Visualising Human Rights. Lydon, J. (ed.). Perth: UWA Publishing, p. 1-25 25 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperChapter




Elizabeth Lydon (Recipient), 2016

Prize/award: Other distinction


Elizabeth Lydon (Recipient), 2014

Prize/award: Other distinction