Professor Joy Damousi

Professor Joy Damousi
Professor Joy Damousi

Professor Damousi is an ARC Kathleen Fitzpatrick Laureate Fellow and Professor of History at the University of Melbourne. She is the Chief Investigator of the ARC Funded Child Refugees and Australian Internationalism Laureate Fellowship.

Her publications include: The Labour of Loss: Mourning, Memory and Wartime Bereavement in Australia (Cambridge 1999; Shortlisted for the NSW Australian History Prize); Freud in the Antipodes: A Cultural History of Psychoanalysis in Australia (UNSW Press 2005; Winner of the Ernest Scott Prize); Talking and Listening in the Age of Modernity: Essays on the History of Sound (ANU Press, 2007) (ed. with Desley Deacon); Colonial Voices: A Cultural History of English in Australia, 1840-1940 (Cambridge 2010; Shortlisted for the NSW Australian History Prize); and What Did You Do in the Cold War Daddy? Personal Stories from a Troubled Time (UNSW Press, 2014), (ed. with Ann Curthoys).

In 2015, Memory and Migration in the Shadow of War: Australia's Greek Immigrants after World War II and the Greek Civil War, was published by Cambridge University Press.

Child Refugees and Australian Internationalism: 1920 - 1970

This study aims to generate new and powerful understandings of the history of child refugees in Australia from 1920-1970. A focus on child refugees has remained an unexplored area of historical analysis in the work on the history of refugees in Australia. This project aims to explore how this history is tied to the history of Australia's international role on refugee and migration issues and how this past can inform us about current and future approaches to refugee policy. Its focus will also be on the campaigns undertaken on behalf of child refugees conducted by relief agencies and humanitarian organisations.


  • Damousi, Joy. "The Campaign for Japanese-Australian Children to enter Australia, 1957-1968. A History of Post-War Humanitarianism," Australian Journal of Politics and History 64, no. 2 (2018), pp. 211-26
  • Damousi, Joy. "The Greek Civil War, Child Removal and Traumatic Pasts in Australia" in Mason, Robert (ed.,). Legacies of Violence: Rendering the Unspeakable Past in Modern Australia. Berghan Books, 2017
  • Damousi, Joy. "Building "healthy happy family units": Aileen Fitzpatrick and reuniting children separated by the Greek Civil War with their families in Australia, 1949-1954," in The History of the Family 2017
  • Damousi, Joy. ""This is against all the British traditions of fair play": Violence against Greeks on the Australian home-front during the First World War," in Walsh, Michael and Vankos, Andrekos (eds.,). Australia and the Great War: Identity, Memory and Mythology. Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 2016, pp. 128-145
  • Damousi, Joy. "Humanitarianism in the interwar years: How Australians responded to the child refugees of the Armenian genocide and the Greek-Turkish exchange," in History Australia 12, No.1, 2015, pp. 95-115
  • Damousi, Joy. Memory and Migration in the Shadow of War: Australia's Greek Immigrants after World War II and the Greek Civil War. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press


May 2018

Interview with Trevor Chappell, ABC Radio, Overnights with Trevor Chappell

When did Australia resort to conscription?

Conscription has been a contentious issue throughout our history - when was it first introduced and how was it used through two world wars and the Vietnam War? Trevor Chappell discussed with Joy Damousi, who is Professor of History at the University of Melbourne and Editor of 'The Conscription Conflict and the Great War'

November 2015

Growing up Greek in Australia

Professor Joy Damousi on the Pursuit website.

I am the child of Greek post-war immigrants. I grew up in the inner-Melbourne suburb of Fitzroy in the 1960s and early 70s.

May 2015

Through a child's eyes

Professor Joy Damousi talks about the 'Child Refugees and Australian Internationalism from 1920 to the present' project.