PhD Scholarship on Colonial Prints

Liz Conor's picture
April 15, 2022
Subject Fields: 
Art, Art History & Visual Studies, Australian and New Zealand History / Studies, Cultural History / Studies, Indigenous Studies, Race Studies

Graphic Encounters PhD Scholarship – History Program, La Trobe University

The scholarship: We seek applications from innovative Indigenous scholars in any discipline relevant to visual and/or print history to join the research team of the Graphic Encounters research project based in the history department at La Trobe University. The project is dedicated to the study of Australian printmaking depicting Aboriginal Australians from ‘discovery’ to federation (1770-1901). This historical period encompasses an era of intercultural encounters imagined within the graphic medium of prints, from engraving to lithography. Concurrently the many techniques in image reproduction refined over these same decades. We seek to document particularly the production of prints featuring Aboriginal Australians and their recurrence and dissemination within a transnational web of print media and print making. The PhD project may focus on the cultural, social, economic, geographic, or other dimensions of colonial print production and circulation during the period, and it is a requirement of the scholarship that the funded work contributes to the aims of the Graphic Encounters: Colonial Prints and the Inscription of Aboriginality research project.

About Graphic Encounters: The project is an Australia Research Council Future Fellowship with Associate Professor Liz Conor as Chief Investigator, based in the History Department at La Trobe University.

Scholarship value and duration:  One PhD scholarship is available for commencement in 2021 and will provide research training in Melbourne. Scholarship holders will be registered at La Trobe University, where Dr Liz Conor will provide research supervision and training and where the recipient will have the opportunity to engage in the History Program’s research events and vibrant postgrad culture. The entitlements and obligations of the award will match the La Trobe University Postgraduate Research Scholarship. This includes a tax-free living allowance for a period of up to three years full-time with a remuneration of between $27,328 - $28,328 per annum. In addition applicants are encouraged to apply for the new Dennis McDermott Research Scholarship at La Trobe University, also dedicated for Indigenous students, a $10K p.a. top-up on the standard RTP rate.

Applicants should have Australian permanent residency, an appropriate Honours 1 or high 2A (or equivalent) undergraduate degree, and a background in Australian history. Due to delays resulting from COVID-19, the successful applicant will commence when convenient to travel. In the interim an online connection to the Graphic Encounters EMu database will be set up and research will commence in online picture collections. 

Eligibility criteria: Applicants are invited from students identifying as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander. They must fulfil the criteria for PhD Admission and Scholarship at La Trobe University. Applicants must have completed a Bachelor degree with First Class Honours or equivalent in history, cultural studies or a relevant discipline, and be intending to enrol full-time in an approved doctoral program at La Trobe University.

Closing date: Due to delays resulting from COVID-19, the successful applicant will commence when convenient to travel, or will commence research in online databases and collections.

Further information: For discussions about suitable topics please contact the Director of the Graphic Encounters research project Liz Conor via email at

How to apply: Applicants should send a single Word document comprising a CV, the names and email addresses for two referees (please supply your referees with this form: and a one page statement which outlines your experience, training and expertise relevant to this project and a 200-300 word summary of your proposed project, by EMAIL to Liz Conor, Students currently completing Honours or Masters degrees should list academic results to date, and likely date for completion.

Contact Info: 
Associate Professor Liz Conor
ARC Future Fellow | Chief Investigator | Graphic Encounters 
Department of Archaeology and History
School of Humanities and Social Sciences | College of Arts, Social Sciences and Commerce
La Trobe University | Bundoora, Australia 3086
T: +61 3 424 132 605  F: 03 9479 1942
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