School of Historical and Philosophical Studies - Theses

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    A history of the Royal Melbourne Hospital
    Inglis, Kenneth Stanley ( 1954-11)
    This thesis covers the following: the hospital movement in Port Philip, the care of patients, the hospital and the University, the hospital and the community and the hospital at Parkville.
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    Show business: a history of theatre in Victoria 1835-1948
    Lesser, L. E. ( 1949)
    ...The material available to the student of the theatrical history of this State and Nation, is relatively sparse, and extremely scattered. Much has been covered in newspaper articles, but no attempt has ever been made to pull the material together and show it as part of a continuous story, superimposed upon the background of the political, social and economic history of the State. That is what I now attempt to do. If it does nothing more than bring the basic information within reasonable compass, I will not feel I have failed. If, on the other hand, it should arouse an interest in either the history or the practice of Theatre, in its widest sense, so that a multitude of young men and women may be rescued from the slough of saccharine sentimentality into which Hollywood has led them, to an increasing interest in legitimate Theatre, the development of which is considered by some to be a concomitant of National greatness, then I shall feel that I have indeed succeeded. (From introduction)
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    A history of the Australian paper making industry 1818-1951
    Rawson, Jacqueline ( 1953)
    The most outstanding feature of the Australian paper industry is the rapid expansion which has taken place since 1936. Before the First World War, Australia’s population totalled about 4,000,000. By 1939 the population had risen to about 7,000,000. This increase in population, coupled with a rise in the per capita consumption of paper and boards, led to a considerably enlarged domestic market. At the same time new fields for the use of paper and board opened up, particularly in the packaging field. (From introduction)
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    E.H. Lascelles and the Victorian Mallee: a survey of settlement 1850-1905
    Wessels, Sheila Frances ( 1966)
    This survey deals with a portion of the Victorian Mal1ee, in the North-West of the state, stretching from Lake Corrong across to Lake Tyrrell. From 1883 to 1890 the area under wheat in Victoria remained stagnant at about 1,100,000 acres as the process of settling farmers on pastoral lands slowed down. The one area in Victoria where the wheatlands increased in the 1890's and 1900's was the Mallee. E. H. Lascelles was largely responsible for the rapid extension of wheat growing in the area during the 1890's. Geographical considerations play a large part in the Mallee story. The area is isolated, the Mallee growth distinctive and the rainfall light and unpredictable. This survey is an attempt to trace the interaction of man and this environment, with the necessary changes and adaptations which took place as the squatters gave way before the selectors. However because the Mallee covers such a large area - virtually all of the North-West corner of the state - it was impossible to survey the whole in such a short study. So E. H. Lascelles and the belt of country in which he was primarily interested formed a suitable and contained segment of the area, with concentration upon the sub-division schemes at Hopetoun and Tyrrell Downs.
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    The overseas mail service of the colony of South Australia 1836-1901
    De Crespigny, Mary Champion ( 1951)
    Introduction: Before the first contract was made with a steamship company for the carriage of mails between England and Australia in 1852, no attempt was made by the British Government to provide a regular mail service to each of the Australian colonies. A contract was signed in 1843 for a monthly service of sailing ships to carry the mails to Sydney and back, but no provision was made for the other colonies, and the official packet service was usually slower than the service given by private vessels carrying mails. The colonies were therefore dependent upon the traders and transport sailing vessels calling at their ports, and forwarded their mails by them direct, or else to neighbouring colonies for onward transmission. Their mails were received in a similar manner. Opportunities were not very frequent in South Australia during the first few years after its settlement, but they increased during the forties, and by the turn of the half century opportunities were most frequent. Arrangements were made in 1842 for mails to be forwarded from and to England from South Australia via India and Suez by the P. and O. Company, or between Bombay and Suez by the East India Company, various persons in India acting as forwarding agents. This route, which was subsequently improved by the mails being forwarded across France between Marseilles and Calais, took longer that the direct all-sea route. The Sydney packet service, after a three year trial, also proved unsatisfactory for South Australian mails. So that the carriage of mails between Adelaide and England and the continent was entirely subject to the vagaries of the shipping traffic of traders and transports, all of which were compelled by law to accept and deliver mails, but whose movements were uncontrolled and unreliable. The average time taken for transporting mails to or from England between 1840 and 1850 was about 158 days; towards the end of the forties the usual time taken was from 120 to 130 days. The voyage out was on average quicker than the voyage home. During the forties, agitation, both in Australia and England, for the inception of a steamship mail service, grew with increasing vigour until the British Government was finally induced to contract with the Australian Royal Mail Steam Navigation Company in 1852 for the carriage of mails to the Australian colonies. The discovery of gold in Australia, and the repeal of the Navigation Laws in 1850, doubtless influence the decision of the authorities, but in any case it would not have been possible for them to have withstood the demands voiced both in England and Australia for what was obviously a most essential requisite for England’s relationship, social, economic, and administrative, with Australia, viz. a regular steamship mail service.
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    William Thomas and the Port Phillip Protectorate, 1838-1849
    Crawford, Ian Maxwell ( 1966)
    Between 1839 and 1849 the total number of Aborigines living in the area between Melbourne and Western Port declined by 50 per cent, despite the impact of the most intensive attempt to civilize Aborigines ever made in Australia. Those Aborigines who did survive showed no signs whatsoever of adopting the white man’s culture. The elaborate scheme known as the Protectorate had failed. Various reasons have been put forward for this failure. Some colonials maintained that the “sneaking murdering black cannibals” were incapable of improvement and even many Christians concluded that the Aborigines were suffering under the judgement of God and therefore could not be helped much by human agencies. The Protectors accused the Government of deliberately hindering their activities and of doing nothing beneficial for the Aborigines. The Government — or at least La Trobe, who was “practically the Government” — maintained that conflict between settlers and Aborigines was an inevitable stage in the spread of civilization, that the Protectors were incompetent and that the Protectorate was an unnecessary encumbrance on the Government. And the Aborigines for their part, said that “all White Men Bungalarly”, thereby signifying their contempt for anything white. Was there any truth in all of these mutual recriminations? The truth — in my opinion — lies in the conflict of ideas. The settlers wanted land and were prepared to sacrifice the rights of the few natives to the God of profit. The Government, while pressed by its English overlords to look after the rights of the Aborigines, lent heavily towards the views expounded by the settlers and pursued a vacillating role, sometimes supporting the Protectors in the hope that they would convert the Aborigines into an economic asset, more often turning a blind eye to abuse. The Protectors tried to stamp their own philosophy and religion — a philosophy and religion which had been successfully applied in England for the reform of the lower classes — on the Aborigines. Each of these groups, then, tried to impose a particular pattern of behaviour on the Aborigines, but the Aborigines, having their own ideals and aspirations, regarded all of these groups as hostile and rejected them. This thesis attempts to describe and examine these conflicting ideas, and in particular, to examine the Aborigines reactions to the schemes devised for their reform. (From Introduction)
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    Immigration and assimilation: an outline account of the IR0 immigrants in Australia
    Kovacs, M. L. (Martin Louis) ( 1955)
    The following considerations are the successive stages of a historic-sociological study of assimilation in its widest sense with the aid of various branches of knowledge, which relate to or deal with the causes, effects, and processes of the transplantation of members of foreign cultures into a new socio-economic and cultural environment. Postwar refugees (and displaced persons) from Eastern Central Europe, resettled in Australia through the agency of the International Refugee Organization have been chosen as the objects of observation. The principal proposition which was followed in this thesis is that: assimilation (integration) is not limited to one side alone but based on reciprocal adjustments between the immigrants and the receiving society, and consists in a great measure of a number of long selective processes; in these, cultural traits are mutually modified, abandoned or assumed according to usefulness or attractiveness irrespective of volition, yet those processes may be hastened or slowed down by the existence of certain attitudes and circumstances; one major factor in this respect consists in the extent to which the pre-immigrational hopes of both the receiving society and the newcomers concerning immigration have materialized. For the determination of the processes of assimilation a brief evaluation of overseas immigrational and assimilational history was undertaken; for the identification of some of the causes of the transplantation of the IRO immigrants various aspects of the Australian and Eastern Central European backgrounds were analyzed; for the establishment of different effects of this population influx an examination of the major adjustment on the part of both the receiving society and the immigrants was performed. (From Introduction)
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    The Queensland Labour governments, 1915-1929
    Higgins, E. M. (Esmonde Macdonald) ( 1954)
    This thesis is a study of the first long period of Queensland Labour Governments. It does not attempt, except in brief outline, to review the work of the Governments as a whole. Its purpose is much narrower: to explain why by 1929 Queensland Labour had become so “stale” that it lost even the electoral support of sections of its traditional supporters. It suggests that this may have been due primarily to inability to maintain the distinctive Labour character and the aggressive social-reformism of the earlier years, and that light is thrown on the reasons for this inability by three episodes — failure to secure a London loan i 1920, controversy from 1922 to 1926 over the demand for legislative action to increase the basic wage and shorten the working week, and the railway lockout of 1927. Parts III-V, the main body of the thesis, are devoted to an examination of these episodes and their significance. Parts I and II are by way of introduction. Part IV attempts to relate this Queensland experience to some general problems of social-democracy.
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    Imperium et libertas: the Roman opposition under the Flavian Principate 69-96 A.D.
    McBryde, Isabel ( 1959)
    The Roman Republic fell because of an overwhelming need for a centralised, powerful, and stable authority, which the existing rule of Senate and People could never satisfy; because it was no longer adequate to the demands made on it by the administration of a great empire. It had become the tool, in its constitution, of the powerful and the ambitious. Yet Caesar, who tried to fulfill this need, also fell, because he could not reconcile in himself the problem created by the conflict between this need for strong government by one man, and the traditional sentiments of Roman patriotism, which presented the problem of the Republic's decay to the Roman senator only in terms of emotion, and loyalty to established usage and institutions. Whether Caesar's aim was monarchy or not, his solution of the Republic’s inefficiency and lack of responsibility by autocratic rule, embodied in a life dictatorship, was a negation of all that was dearest in the political tradition of Rome. For this he died, not for any vague possibility of the establishment of monarchical rule on his return from the proposed Parthian campaign. It remained for his nephew and heir, Octavian, later Augustus, to reconcile these two needs, and end the rivalry and struggle for aggrandisemant among the nobiles which destroyed the Republic. For his establishment of what is known as the Augustan Principate gave to one man the direction of the state and control of all its important departments, without offending Republican tradition; even using it and the Republican institutions to add strength to the new creation. It is the opposition to this new creation, the Principate, which forms the subject of this essay. Not the opposition of her subject peoples in the provinces to foreign domination, but that which springs from the Romans themselves, and is found in Rome, directed against its rulers and their system of government. It is an opposition reflected not only in the sphere of politics, but also in philosophy and literature. Since our own century has shown that Tacitus did not exaggerate, or misinterpret mankind, in his picture of the horror, and crippling spiritual effects of despotic absolute power, the problem of the preservation of political liberty, of freedom of thought and expression, and even of human dignity, in the face of the demands of the state, has become very real, and one of vital interest. Though the danger to individual liberty is inherent in almost any powerful state, as Abraham Lincoln recognised when he said, It has long been a grave question whether any government not too strong for the liberties of its people, can be strong enough to maintain its existence in great emergencies. Liberty, and human rights, have become in the modern world, often mere political catchwords of emotional content, but this does not lessen their essential importance, and so it will perhaps not be without interest to look at the efforts of the Roman opposition against the Principate, the answer to the administrative inadequacy of the Republican government. I have limited this study to the opposition under the Flavian Principate, a period of only twenty-seven years, from 69 A.D. to 96, but one of intense interest, forming, as it were, a transition between the Principate as established by Augustus and developed by the Julio-Claudian principes, and the virtual monarchy of the Antonines. An age that is characterised by conflicting trends and convictions in politics and literature. But if we are to look for the nature and aims of the opposition, we must first look at the government against which it is directed, for its nature will to a large extent condition that of the opposition.
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    Selectors and squatters in the Hamilton District in the 1860's
    Watson, John M. C. ( 1957)
    From Introduction: The geology of the Western district shows several variations which influence land utilization and in many places control it. In the Hamilton area three distinct physiographic divisions meet. The older western end of the volcanic plains which surround the town on the south, east, and north-east, contain good soil and form an open park-like country with two or three trees to the acre. North-west of the town lies the southern half of the western end of the dividing range. Here, much of the rich topsoil has been washed away into the valleys, leaving only small areas of the original surface on the ridges. This has produced the characteristic land formation of the Casterton-Digby country – numerous hills, with fairly steep, treeless slopes and rich creek banks in the narrow valleys. In the 1860’s both these areas were highly fertile and ideal for sheep. However from Coleraine north to the Glenelg the land was poorer and heavily timbered. Here, carrying capacity was lower and stations were correspondingly larger. Although it was good drought-free sheep country, it was poor compared with the Wannon valley which meandered through it “an enchanting hollow in the midst of plateau sterility”. The fertile appearance of this district had greatly impressed Major Mitchell, and probably owing to the success of the squatter here, Hamilton was thought of as being destined to be a prosperous farming locality. This belief was encouraged by rumours of the vast richness of “Henty’s country”, and ecstatic descriptions of isolated areas like Weerangourt and the Wannon valley. These spots were constantly spoken of as possessing extraordinary wealth and this was true, for as a pastoral district Hamilton was unsurpassed in Victoria. The grasses were naturally good and abundant, and the land sound and healthy. The steep sloping hills, the wide shelterless plains, the dry stoney ridges were, when accompanied by rich soil, the best land for the squatter. Because it was ideal country for sheep, many people believed Hamilton to be the richest district in Victoria. In every direction the land was good, and in some places excellent, but good as it was, its quality was vastly exaggerated.