The past is consumed on a grand scale: popularised by television programs, enjoyed by reading groups, walking groups, historical societies and heritage tours, and supported by unprecedented digital access to archival records. Yet our history has also become the subject of heated political debate. In Private Lives, Public History, historian Anna Clark explores how our personal pasts intersect with broader historical questions. Drawing on interviews with Australians from five communities around the country, she uncovers how we think about the past in the context of our local and intimate stories, and the role that history plays in our lives.
Anna Clark is an Australian Research Council Future Fellow in Public History at the University of Technology Sydney. With Stuart Macintyre, she wrote The History Wars in 2003, which was awarded the NSW Premier's Prize for Australian History and the Queensland Premier's Prize for Best Literary or Media Work Advancing Public Debate.