Prestigious Research Award for Dr Laura Rademaker

Laura has recently been named as one of four recipients of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia’s 2021 Paul Bourke Awards for Early Career Research. The ASSA acknowledges Laura as ‘a leading historian of Indigenous Australia, with an outstanding research record encompassing religious, gender and deep history.’ They recognise her distinctive historical practice, based on the extensive use of oral history and detailed archival research, and in close collaboration with Indigenous communities.

Laura says ‘Indigenous history has so many insights to offer us’; I am ‘passionate about collaborative history…to gain new insights about Australia’s past.’ She explains that she involves communities in the design of the research, the research process and the creation and dissemination of research output. She is most grateful to the communities that have supported her in her research in West Arnhem, Groote Eylandt and the Tiwi Islands. Laura encourages people not to be intimidated by Australia’s complex past, but to give it the attention that it deserves.

Professor Ann McGrath states: ‘It was an honour to nominate Laura for this award. She embraces opportunities, and takes on research challenges in a rigorous and professional manner. Her latest work on temporality and rock art will provide important ways to appreciate Australia’s deep history and its tellings.’