Participant Info

First Name
Last Name
Australian National University
Website URL
Gender, Colonialism, Intermarriage, Deep Human Past, Transnational, Indigenous History, Australia, Cherokee, Ancient Memory, Antiquity
Additional Contact Information
Email is best contact and then I can arrange a time to talk.

Personal Info

About Me

Born in Brisbane, Australia, I am a Distinguished Professor of History at the Australian National University and hold a Kathleen Fitzpatrick  Laureate Fellowship. I have produced history across many genres and am keen to expand its scope by working with Indigenous Australians. I love a good story and historical research is an exciting way to find them. My current interests are deep human history in global context, spatial history and scale. I have a longstanding interst in the history of gender and colonialism, the history of Indigenous relations and intermarriage in Australia and North America. My latest project is ‘Rediscovering the Deep Human Past: Global Networks, Future Opportunities’. My publications include ‘Illicit Love: Interracial Sex and Marriage in the United States and Australia’ (University of Nebraska, 2015) and ‘Born in the Cattle’ (Allen & Unwin 1987). I am interested in presenting scholarly history in a range of genres. Exhibitions curated include one on Women and Childbirth during the Federation era and one on International Outlaws as national heroes. I produced the film ‘A Frontier Conversation’ (Wonderland Productions, Ronin distributors, 2006) and with Andrew Pike, co-directed and produced the prize-winning ‘Message from Mungo’ (Ronin, 2014); I have worked as an advisor on various television and film projects. My consultancy and outreach work have included co-ordinating the history project of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody, working as an expert witness in the Gunner & Cubillo case and on various Northern Territory land claims. I was accepted as a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences and was awarded an Order of Australia Medal for services to history, especially Indigenous history. My work has also been recognized by the award of the Inaugural W.K. Hancock prize, the Human Rights Award for non-fiction, the John Barrett Prize, the Archibald Hannah Junior Fellowship at the Beinecke Library, Yale, Membership of hte Institute of Advanced Study, Durham and Membership of the School of Social Sciences, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, a Rockefeller Foundation Scholarly Residency at Bellagio, an Honorary Doctorate at Linneaus University, Sweden.

Recent Publications


McGrath, A.  Illicit Love: Interracial Sex and Marriage in the United States and Australia.  Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2015.

McGrath, A. and Curthoys, A.  How to Write History That People Want to Read. Coogee: UNSW, 2009; New York & London: Palgrave, 2011.

McGrath, A. and Jebb, M. (eds).  Long history, deep time: deepening histories of place. Canb: ANU, 2015.

 Articles and Chapters

McGrath, A., ‘On the Sacred Clay of Botany Bay’: Landings, National Memorialization, and Multiple Sovereignties’, New Diversities, Vol. 19, no. 2, 2017, 85-102

McGrath, A.  “Lady Mungo and the New and Old Discovery Narrative”.  In The Vocabulary and Symbols of Colonial Archaeology, edited by Effros, B. and Guolong, L.  (accepted September 2015, Forthcoming 2017.)

McGrath, A., “Conquering Sacred Ground? Climbing Uluru and Mato Tipila”.  In National Parks Beyond the Nation, edited by Howkins, A. and Fiege, M.  Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2016.

McGrath, A., ‘Ancient “Evidence” for a Modern Sacred’ edited by K.Aigner and S. Kleinert, The Indigenous Australian Collection, Vatican Ethnological Museum, 2017.

McGrath, A.  “Crossing History’s Mountains: The Historic Values of the Greater Blue Mountains”.  In Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area: Values for a new generation, edited by Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area Advisory Committee, 97-136.  Sydney, 2015.

McGrath, A.  “Deep Histories in Time, or Crossing the Great Divide”.  In Long history, deep time: deepening histories of place, edited by McGrath, A. and Jebb, M, 1-32.  Canberra: ANU Press, 2015.


McGrath, A. and Allbrook, M.  “Collaborative Histories of the Willandra Lakes”.  In Long history, deep time: deepening histories of place, edited by McGrath, A. and Jebb, M, 241-252.  Canberra: ANU Press, 2015.

McGrath, A.  “Shamrock Aborigines: the Irish, the Aboriginal Australians, and their Children”.  In Irish and Scottish Encounters with Indigenous Peoples, ed. by Morton, G. and Wilson, D., 108-143.  Montreal: McGills, 2013.

McGrath, A.  “Australia’s Occluded Voices: Ned Kelly’s History Wars”.  In Narratives of the occluded Irish diaspora: Subversive voices, edited by Oadhea, M.  and O’ Callaghan, J., 7-36.  Oxford: Peter Lang, 2012.


McGrath, A. and Pike, A. Director/Producer  Message from Mungo.  Documentary film. Canberra: Ronin Films, 2014.  DVD. 70 mins

Wonderland Productions, A Frontier Conversation, Ronin Films, 2006.

Web Products/Digital Histories

McGrath, A.  “Deepening Histories Digital History website”. 2014-6.

It contains more than 16 separate digital publications by the team.

Media Coverage
Country Focus
Australia, North America.
Expertise by Geography
Australia, North America, United States
Expertise by Chronology
Ancient, 18th century, 19th century, 20th century
Expertise by Topic
American Founding Era, Colonialism, Gender, Genocide, Human Rights, Indigenous Peoples, Women