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Michelle Dewar interviewed by Susan Marsden [sound recording]
Bib ID 3125177
Format AudioAudio, OnlineOnline [sound recording]
Dewar, Michelle, Interviewee
Online Versions
Access Conditions Access open for research, personal copies and public use. 
Description 2004 
3 digital audio tapes (ca. 195 min.) 

Michelle 'Mickey' Dewar, born 1956, in Melbourne talks about her family background; her schooling; her childhood interest in history; her university years; part-time work and study; her history teachers and their impact; 1970s culture; employment at Percy Grainger Museum (1977-9); learning about Grainger's life and secrets; her changing historical views over time; return to university [BA (Hons) Melbourne University 1978]; ghost-writing for Outback Press (1979); the depressing parts of 1970s Melbourne life; her visit and then move to Northern Territory (1979, 1980); her first impressions of Darwin; post-cyclone mess, floods; teaching part-time; macho culture in Darwin; her year at Darwin Community College as tutor and lecturer; her long-distance marriage to David; her work as a teacher for new NT Teaching Service with Aboriginal people in Arnhem land (1980-81); her view of her role; the policy of non-interference; returning to Darwin, work, husband, children; public service housing; post-Cyclone Tracy housing design; the impact of the cyclone; maternity leave from NT Education Department (1983-85); working part-time on Masters at University of New England and its difficulties.

Dewar discusses her PhD. and publication of her Masters thesis; her freelance public history work; taking on a full-time position at the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory (MAGNT)(beginning in 1994); working as a research assistant and writer for Nugget Coombs; the role of a museum within its community; the museum directors, their roles, successes and incidents; how her museum experiences influenced her own views of history; why historiography is different in the Northern Territory; the role of the NT Historical Society; development of the National Trust; NT government's Heritage Unit; demolition of the Hotel Darwin; Fannie Bay Gaol, its changing character as a historical site; her move to work at the Office of the Chief Minister (2002); her current job assisting the Chief Minister; what perspectives she brings to the job as a historian; Hansard as an archives, artefacts of politics, politics as a vocation; value of conservation management plans for NT heritage properties; general observations on Australian history as she has lived it; the future of history; her children's studies at university; her husband's work.


Recorded on July 22, 2004 at Darwin, N.T.

Also available online

Index/Finding Aid Note Timed summary and corrected transcript (typescript, 95 leaves) available. 
Subjects Dewar, Michelle -- Interviews.  |  Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory.  |  Historians -- Australia -- Interviews.  |  Northern Territory -- History.
Occupation Historians.
Other authors/contributors Marsden, Susan, 1952-, Interviewer

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