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Ian Hoskins Wins 2023 Frank Broeze Memorial Maritime History Book Prize

Australia’s deep past and its modern history are intrinsically linked to the Pacific. Ian Hoskins’ Australia & the Pacific: A history (NewSouth) examines Australia’s relationship with the Pacific region – from our ties with Papua New Guinea and New Zealand to our complex connections with China, Japan and the United States – and this month it has been awarded the 2023 Frank Broeze Memorial Maritime History Book Prize.

The judges said of Hoskins’ book that its study of Australia’s relationship with the Pacific Ocean is ‘masterfully woven’: ‘It convincingly demonstrates how the geography of the Pacific and its cultures have influenced our climate, society, economy, politics and national identity. The narrative spans millennia, from deep time through to European exploration, colonisation (with discussion of Australia both as a colony and a coloniser), the Cold War and a future focused on the urgent challenges of climate change,’ they said.

Australia & the Pacific investigates how the advent of modern human rights and the creation of the United Nations after World War Two changed Australia and examines our increasing regional engagement following the rise of China and the growing unpredictability of US foreign policy. Concluding with the offshore detention of asylum seekers and current debates over climate change, Hoskins questions Australia’s responsibilities towards our increasingly imperilled neighbours.

The 2023 Frank Broeze Memorial Maritime History Book Prize was judged by Dr Ross Anderson, Dr Peter Hobbins and Professor Wendy van Duivenvoorde. The winner receives a prize of $8,000 supported by the Australian Association for Maritime History (AAMH) and the Australian National Maritime Museum (ANMM).

Smuggled: An Illegal History of Journeys to Australia by Ruth Balint and Julie Kalman, also published by NewSouth Publishing, was commended as the runner up in the 2023 Prize.

About Ian Hoskins
Ian Hoskins has worked as an academic and public historian in Sydney for over 30 years. The original edition of Sydney Harbour: A history won the Queensland Premier’s Literary Prize for History in 2010 and Coast, his history of the New South Wales coast, won the New South Wales Premier’s Prize for Community and Regional History in 2014. His most recent work, Australia & the Pacific: A history was shortlisted for the Australian History Prize in 2022. He was the CH Currey Fellow at the State Library of NSW in 2019 exploring the Library’s extensive Pacific collections.

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