Arts Public Lecture VII: The Secret Life of the Shrine

Where: BMW Edge Federation Square
When: Wednesday 18 November 2009
Time: 6.00pm

Marking the 75th anniversary of the Shrine, Professor Bruce Scates will be joined by a panel of leading historians: Ken Inglis, Joan Beaumontand Katti Williams to debate the past, present and future of the Shrine of Remembrance.

This year marks the 75th anniversary of the dedication of the Shrine of Remembrance. Raised in the midst of the Great Depression, the subject of bitter public debate and a personal crusade for Sir John Monash, the Shrine is the largest state memorial Australia built and probably the most controversial.

Join Professor Bruce Scates, Director of the National Centre for Australian Studies, as he charts the Shrine’s history from the first fatalities of the Gallipoli Landing to the ‘Memory Wars’ of the present day. The author of the Cambridge history of the Shrine, Professor Scates will bring the building to life though powerful personal stories, archival intrigues and a stunning visual archive.

A panel of leading historians will explore the memorial’s fascinating symbolism, explain how it came to command the landscape of Melbourne and consider the changing nature of our traumatic memories of war. A place of pilgrimage and a tourist destination, a centre for education and a vibrant heritage site, a forum for dissent and itself a battlefield, this is the story of one of the world’s most impressive and most controversial memorials.

A Place to Remember: The History of the Shrine of Remembrance will be launched by the Governor of Victoria, Professor David de Kretser, AC and is published by Cambridge University Press.

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