Clio’s Lives

Clio’s Lives

Biographies and Autobiographies of Historians

Edited by: Doug Munro orcid, John G. Reid

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Including contributions from leading scholars in the field from both Australia and North America, this collection explores diverse approaches to writing the lives of historians and ways of assessing the importance of doing so. Beginning with the writing of autobiographies by historians, the volume then turns to biographical studies, both of historians whose writings were in some sense nation-defining and those who may be regarded as having had a major influence on defining the discipline of history. The final section explores elements of collective biography, linking these to the formation of historical networks. A concluding essay by Barbara Caine offers a critical appraisal of the study of historians’ biographies and autobiographies to date, and maps out likely new directions for future work.

Clio’s Lives is a very good scholarly collection that advances the study of autobiography and biography within the writing of history itself, taking theoretical questions in significant new directions. The contributors are well known and highly respected in the history profession and write with an insight and intellectual energy that will ensure the book has considerable impact. They examine cutting-edge issues about the writing of history at the personal level through autobiography and biography in diverse and innovative ways. Together the writers have provided reflective chapters that will be widely read for their impressive theoretical advances as well as being inspirational for new entrants to the disciplinary area.
— Patricia Grimshaw, University of Melbourne

Clio’s Lives brings together a most interesting and varied cast of contributors. Its chapters contain sophisticated and well-penned ruminations on the uses of biography and autobiography among historians. These are clearly connected with the general themes of the volume. This delightfully mixed bag makes very good reading and, as well, will serve as a substantial contribution to the study of the biography and autobiography.
— Eric Richards, Flinders University


ISBN (print):
ISBN (online):
Publication date:
Oct 2017
ANU Press
Biography Series
Arts & Humanities: Biography & Autobiography, English Language & Literature, History
Australia; Europe: United Kingdom; North America: Canada, United States

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Clio’s Lives »

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  1. Introduction (PDF, 0.1MB)Doug Munro and John G. Reid doi

Autobiographies of Historians

  1. Writing History/Writing about Yourself: What’s the Difference? (PDF, 0.2MB)Sheila Fitzpatrick doi
  2. Walvin, Fitzpatrick and Rickard: Three Autobiographies of Childhood and Coming of Age (PDF, 0.2MB)Doug Munro and Geoffrey Gray doi
  3. The Female Gaze: Australian Women Historians’ Autobiographies (PDF, 0.1MB)Ann Moyal doi

Nation-Defining Authors

  1. ‘A gigantic confession of life’: Autobiography, ‘National Awakening’ and the Invention of Manning Clark (PDF, 0.2MB)Mark McKenna doi
  2. Ceci n’est pas Ramsay Cook: A Biographical Reconnaissance (PDF, 0.4MB)Donald Wright doi

Discipline-Defining Authors

  1. Intersecting and Contrasting Lives: G.M. Trevelyan and Lytton Strachey (PDF, 0.2MB)Alastair MacLachlan doi
  2. An Ingrained Activist: The Early Years of Raphael Samuel (PDF, 0.2MB)Sophie Scott-Brown doi
  3. Pursuing the Antipodean: Bernard Smith, Identity and History (PDF, 0.5MB)Sheridan Palmer doi

Collective Biography

  1. Australian Historians Networking, 1914–1973 (PDF, 0.2MB)Geoffrey Bolton doi
  2. Country and Kin Calling? Keith Hancock, the National Dictionary Collaboration, and the Promotion of Life Writing in Australia (PDF, 0.6MB)Melanie Nolan doi
  3. Imperial Women: Collective Biography, Gender and Yale-trained Historians (PDF, 0.8MB)John G. Reid doi
  4. Concluding Reflections (PDF, 0.1MB)Barbara Caine doi

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