Welcome to the final edition of Articulation for 2018.
With December comes the end of my term as Dean, a position I accepted during the University’s global search for an ongoing Dean of Arts. I have enjoyed leading the Faculty and meeting many of you at alumni and engagement events throughout the year. I hope you will continue to stay in touch when I return to my role as Professor of Theatre Studies in the School of Culture and Communication.
Preparation is now well underway for the arrival of our new Dean, Professor Russell Goulbourne, in January. As many of you will know, Professor Goulbourne is a noted French literature scholar and Professor of French Literature at King’s College London, where he also served as Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities from January 2014 to July this year. Before this, he taught for more than a decade at the University of Leeds after being educated at Keble College, Oxford.
Professor Goulbourne has published and taught extensively on major figures in French intellectual culture of the 17th and 18th centuries, including Voltaire, Diderot and Rousseau. His research interests include the history of the book and textual editing, and reception of classical antiquity in early modern France.
Professor Goulbourne joins the University as an engaged scholar with a passion for the role of arts and humanities in an evolving knowledge economy. I’m sure you will join me in welcoming Professor Goulbourne and his family to Australia and I hope many of you will have an opportunity to meet him at alumni and engagement activities throughout the year.
Among our biggest achievements in the Faculty over the past few months has been the opening of a new exhibition in the Arts West Gallery. Titled Awaken, the exhibition features significant cultural objects from communities in Arnhem Land, Cape York, and the Pintupi in the Western Desert, held in the Donald Thomson Collection. In this edition of ARTiculation, we feature an an interview with one of the curators of Awaken recent BA graduate Shonae Hobson, a southern Kaantju woman from Far North Queensland. She speaks about her role with the Awaken exhibition and its significance and meaning for the source communities.
Also featured in this edition of ARTiculation is 2018 Melbourne Arts Student Society (M-ASS) student president Michael Hester, who writes about the successful launch of a joint M-ASS and Faculty of Arts fundraising venture for our 110 Scholarship, which aims to safeguard the accessibility of the Arts to all.
A growing appreciation of the value of arts within STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) is addressed in a new Faculty of Arts podcast series: Picking Up STEAM. With topics ranging from how online dating apps are changing how we choose our partners, to how digital technologies are changing the way we mourn loved ones, it’s well worth a listen.
If you’ve ever wondered how your phone can listen and respond to your voice, you will enjoy the article featuring alumna linguist Judith Bishop. Judith helps program language data that enables machines to listen and learn from human interactions. Her employer, Appen, has just established a scholarship at the Faculty to support Linguistics students.
This edition of ARTiculation also includes an overview of the popular 10 Great Books Program for 2019, an exciting new summer intensive titled The History of News, and some alumni and Faculty Prize announcements. I’m sure you’ll also enjoy the story featuring alumna Soumya Indurti and current Philosophy major Hamish Litt, that highlights the benefits of the Mentoring at Melbourne program.
I wish all our alumni in Australia and throughout the world our best wishes for happiness and success in 2019.
Professor Denise Varney
Dean of Arts