REVISED EVENT: ‘Space, silence and hybridity in Ernestine Hill’s northern vision of Australia’ Guest Lecture by Eleanor Hogan

Sunday 12 June | 2pm to 4pm

Event Details

  • Date
    Sunday, 12 June, 2:00pm - 4:00pm
  • Location
    Northern Territory Library (inside Parliament House)
  • Cost
Two portrait photographs of women

NOTICE: Unfortunately Eleanor Hogan has tested positive for covid, so her keynote talk will not go ahead as planned. The official welcome for the Australasian Universities Language and Literature Association will still be going ahead, but with an invitation for attendees to share current creative works (poetry, prose etc). All are welcome to still attend. 


The Great Australian Loneliness (1938), is a vivid account based on the travels of Ernestine Hill through northern Australia during the 1930s. In the notes she compiled for the book, Hill rebuffed the era’s conventional view of the north as silent, empty and hostile, instead painting a picture of life as unruly and convivial, with many hybrid voices reverberating in its great wide spaces.

Hill, a journalist and best-selling author, was an unconventional woman for her day. If her northern vision expresses a form of proto-multiculturalism, from contemporary perspectives her writing is marred by paternalistic and at times, imperialistic notions of race and culturally insensitive language. Her archival material also reveals that she was aware of frontier conflict, which she glossed over in The Great Australian Loneliness, although she did entertain more progressive views of Australian history in later unpublished works.

Join Eleanor Hogan at the opening of the triennial conference for the Australasian Universities Language and Literature Association. Author of a biography of Hills and Daisy Bates shortlisted for the 2021 Queensland Literary Awards, Dr Hogan revisits The Great Australian Loneliness as a lens for considering an evolving consciousness of intercultural relations and national identity.

This is a free event and catering will be provided.  If you would like to attend the full conference please visit

Bookings are essential for this event via Eventbrite.

Image: Ernestine Hill and Daisy Bates. Courtesy of Eleanor Hogan.