Research Seminar: Reading Walkabout

Associate Professor Anna Johnston

Friday 9 September

Room 601, Michie Building (#9)

3pm - 4pm

Walkabout (1934-74) was an extremely popular magazine that sought to introduce armchair readers to remote Australian regions and the Asia-Pacific, and to encourage them, through travel, to develop a sense of belonging and place. Lavishly illustrated with black and white photographs, and featuring some of the most interesting mid-century writers across a variety of fields, Walkabout addressed a diverse range of topics: geology; flora and fauna; the outback and its people; the Pacific region; and a distinctively Australian modernity. The magazine also played a central role in mid-century Australian cultural life, publishing and featuring key writers and inculcating a community of engaged and informed general readers. This paper focusses on the literary culture of Walkabout within the broader context of the magazine.

Join us for a drink, after the seminar, at St Lucy’s

Anna Johnston is an ARC Future Fellow in the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities, and Associate Professor in English Literature in the School of Communication and Arts. A graduate of the University of Queensland, Anna has worked at the University of Tasmania, where she was Director of the Centre for Colonialism and Its Aftermath (2013-16) and an ARC Queen Elizabeth II Research Fellow (2007-14). In 2014-15, Anna was Visiting Professor of Australian Studies at the University of Tokyo. She has published widely in the field of colonial and postcolonial studies, focussing on literary and cultural history: her most recent monograph is The Paper War: Morality, Print Culture, and Power in Colonial New South Wales (UWA Press 2011). She has particular interests in settler colonialism, travel writing, and missionary writing and empire.

About Research Seminar and Workshop Series


Writing and communicating about pandemics: 2020 School of Communication and Arts Research Seminar Series

The research seminar and workshop series occur each semester, each with a different topic and guest speaker from UQ or otherwise.

Semester 1, 2020 Seminars & Workshops


Friday, 13 March

Literature as Media: Chinese Online Literature—Storytellers, platforms and transmedia literary world

(Part of the Platform Media: Algorithms, Accountability and Media Design EVENTS)

Dr Tony Xiang Ren, Western Sydney University, with A/Prof Kim Wilkins, Dr Helen Marshall & Emily Baulch

Friday, 27 March



Dr Cedric Courtois

Friday, 10 April


TBC Dr Beck Wise

Friday, 24 April



Dr Skye Doherty

Friday, 8 May


TBC Dr Andrea Bubenik

Friday, 22 May


TBC Dr Chris Hay

Friday, 5 June

Online via Zoom

Research Seminar - Imagining the End of the World: Writing the Apocalypse before Covid-19 Dr Helen Marshall

Friday, 3 July

Online via Zoom:

Research Seminar - Developing Disciplinary Literacies in Hybrid Classes

Dr Beck Wise



level 6, Michie Building (#9)