Dr Robert Foster

Robert Foster
Associate Professor
School of Humanities
Faculty of Arts

Robert was appointed to the History Department in 2000, and his research focus has been Australian Aboriginal History, Comparative Indigenous History and general South Australian History. Prior to this time he worked as a consultant historian, especially in Native Title research. He has collaborated with Amanda Nettelbeck on a variety of projects dealing with the history and memory of frontier violence in Australia and Canada. He teaches courses on Australian Aboriginal History, Australian History and Ethnic Cleansing and Genocide. Until recently he was head of the History Department. His current research is focussed on Aboriginal advocacy in South Australia's interwar years, the origins of the North West Reserve and Colonial Nationalism.

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Dr Robert Foster

Robert was appointed to the History Department in 2000, and his research focus has been Australian Aboriginal History, Comparative Indigenous History and general South Australian History. Prior to this time he worked as a consultant historian, especially in Native Title research. He has collaborated with Amanda Nettelbeck on a variety of projects dealing with the history and memory of frontier violence in Australia and Canada. He teaches courses on Australian Aboriginal History, Australian History and Ethnic Cleansing and Genocide. Until recently he was head of the History Department. His current research is focussed on Aboriginal advocacy in South Australia's interwar years, the origins of the North West Reserve and Colonial Nationalism.

Awards and Achievements

Date Type Title Institution Name Amount
2012 Award Executive Dean of the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences' Award for Outstanding Student Feedback in Learning and Teaching
2008 Achievement Shortlisted, Chief Minister's Northern Territory History Book Award for In the Name of the Law (Wakefield Press, 2007)
2002 Award Winner, John Tragenza National Community History Award for Fatal Collisions (Wakefield Press, 2001)
2002 Achievement Shortlisted, NSW Premier's Award for Fatal Collisions (Wakefield Press, 2001)

Education

Date Institution name Country Title
University of Adelaide Australia PhD

Research Interests

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander History, Australian History, History, Law and Society

Journals

Year Citation
2013 Foster, R. (2013). 'His Majesty's most gracious and benevolent intentions': South Australia's foundation, the idea of 'difference', and Aboriginal rights. Journal of Australian Colonial History, 15, 105-120.
2012 Nettelbeck, A. & Foster, R. (2012). Food and governance on the frontiers of colonial Australia and Canada's North West Territories. Aboriginal History, 36, 21-41.
2012 Nettelbeck, A. & Foster, R. (2012). "As fine a body of men": how the Canadian Mountie brought law and order to the memory of the Australian frontier. Journal of Australian Studies, 36, 2, 125-140.
10.1080/14443058.2012.671186
2010 Nettelbeck, A. & Foster, R. (2010). Colonial judiciaries, Aboriginal protection and South Australia's policy of punishing 'with exemplary severity'. Australian Historical Studies, 41, 3, 319-336.
10.1080/1031461X.2010.493947
2010 Nettelbeck, A. & Foster, R. (2010). Commemorating Foundation: a study in regional historical memory. History Australia, 7, 3, 1-18.
10.2104/ha100053
2009 Foster, R. (2009). Don't mention the War. Frontier violence and the language of concealment. History Australia, 6, 2, 1-15.
10.2104/ha090068
2009 Foster, R. & Nettelbeck, A. (2009). The rule of law on the South Australian frontier. Legal History, 13, 2, 23-53.
2007 Nettelbeck, A. & Foster, R. (2007). Reading the elusive letter of the law: policing the South Australian frontier. Australian Historical Studies, 38, 130, 296-311.
2006 Foster, R. (2006). Legendary Tales of the Australian Aborigines. Pacifica, -.
2004 Foster, R. (2004). The central Australian expedition 1844-1846: The journals of Charles Sturt, volume 10. Mariners Mirror, 90, 4, 499-500.
2003 Paul, A. & Foster, R. (2003). Married to the land - Land grants to Aboriginal women in South Australia 1848-1911. Australian Historical Studies, 34, 121, 48-68.
10.1080/10314610308596236
2003 Foster, R. (2003). Mark McKenna, Looking for Blackfellas' Point: An Australian History of Place. API Review of Books, 20, www 1-www 2.
2000 Foster, R. (2000). Paper yabber: The messenger and the message. Aboriginal History, 22, 1211-1212.
2000 Foster, R. (2000). Rations, co-existence, and the colonisation of Aboriginal labour in the South Australian pastoral industry, 1860-1911. Aboriginal History, 24, 1-26.
2000 Foster, R. (2000). 'Endless trouble and agitation': Aboriginal activism in the protectionist era. Historical Society of South Australia. Journal, 28, 15-27.
1998 Foster, R. (1998). Tommy Walker walk up here.... Aboriginal History. Aboriginal History Monograph, 6, 190-220.
1998 Foster, R. (1998). The Legend of James Brown. Australian Historical Studies, 29, 111, 210-229.
10.1080/10314619808596070
1998 Foster, R. (1998). The origin of the protection of Aboriginal rights in South Australian pastoral leases. Land, Rights, Laws: Issues of Native Title, 24, 1-8.
1998 Mühlhäusler, P., Foster, R. & Clarke, P. (1998). Give me back my name: The 'classification' of Aboriginal people in colonial South Australia. Papers in Pidgin and Creole Linguistics, 5, 35-59.
1998 Foster, R. (1998). Logic's unexpected celebrity. Aboriginal History. Aboriginal History Monograph, 6, 158-189.
1996 Mühlhäusler, P. & Foster, R. (1996). Native Tongue, Captive Voice. The Representation of the Aboriginal "Voice" in Colonial South Australia. Language and Communication, 16, 1, 1-16.
10.1016/0271-5309(95)00020-8

Books

Year Citation
2016 Nettelbeck, A., Smandych, R., Knafla, L. & Foster, R. (2016). Fragile Settlements Aboriginal Peoples, Law, and Resistance in South-West Australia and Prairie Canada. Vancouver: UBC Press.
2012 R. Foster & P. Sendziuk (Eds.) (2012). Turning Points: Chapters in South Australian History. Australia: Wakefield Press.
2012 Foster, R. & Nettelbeck, A. (2012). Out of the silence: the history and memory of South Australia's frontier wars. Australia: Wakefield Press.
2007 Nettelbeck, A. & Foster, R. (2007). In the name of the law - William Willshire and the policing of the Australian frontier. Australia: Wakefield Press.
2003 Foster, R., Monaghan, P. & Mühlhäusler, P. (2003). Early forms of Aboriginal English in South Australia, 1840s-1920s. Rsch Sch of Pacific and Asian Studies, ANU Canberra ACT 0200: Pacific Linguistics, Australian National University.
2001 Foster, R., Hosking, R. & Nettelbeck, A. (2001). Fatal collisions: The South Australian frontier and the violence of memory. 17 RUNDLE STREET KENT TOWN SA 5067: Wakefield Press.

Book Chapters

Year Citation
2017 Foster, R. & Nettelbeck, A. (2017). From Protectorate to Protection, 1838-1911. In P. Brock & T. Gara (Eds.), Colonialism and its Aftermath: An Aboriginal History of South Australia Wakefield Press.
2013 Nettelbeck, A. & Foster, R. (2013). On the trail of the march west: The NWMP in Western Canadian historical memory. In A. Perry, E. Jones & L. Morton (Eds.), Place and Replace: Essays on Western Canada (pp. 76-92). Canada: University of Manitoba Press.
2012 Foster, R. & Sendziuk, P. (2012). Turning points in South Australian history. In R. Foster & P. Sendziuk (Eds.), Turning Points: Chapters in South Australian History (pp. 1-6). Australia: Wakefield Press.
2012 Foster, R. & Nettelbeck, A. (2012). Proclamation Day and the rise and fall of South Australian nationalism. In R. Foster & P. Sendziuk (Eds.), Turning Points: Chapters in South Australian History (pp. 48-62). Australia: Wakefield Press.
2010 Nettelbeck, A. & Foster, R. (2010). The Central Australian frontier and the struggle to remember. In L. Burke (Ed.), The Politics of Cultural Memory (pp. 182-198). United Kingdom: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
2005 Foster, R. (2005). Logic [Pinba] (c. 1855 - 1903). In Australian Dictionary of Biography Carlton, Vic: Melbourne University Press.
2005 Foster, R. (2005). Poltpalingada Booboorowie (c. 1830 - 1901). In Australian Dictionary of Biography [Supplemetary Volume] (pp. 324-Carlton, Vic: Melbourne University Press.
2005 Foster, R. & Nettelbeck, A. (2005). Writing William Willshire. In S. Magarey & K. Round (Eds.), Living history: Essays on history as biography (pp. 79-91). Unley, South Australia: Australian Humanities Press.
2005 Foster, R. (2005). Coexistence and colonization on pastoral leaseholds in South Australia, 1851-99. In J. McLaren, A. R. Buck & N. E. Wright (Eds.), Despotic Dominion: Property Rights in British Settler Societies (pp. 248-265). Vancouver: UBC Press: University of British Columbia.
2001 Foster, R. (2001). Aboriginal land rights. In The Wakefield Companion to South Australian History Kent Town S.A.: Wakefield Press.
2001 Foster, R. (2001). Tommy Walker. In W. Prest, K. Round & C. Fort (Eds.), The Wakefield Companion to South Australian History (pp. 576-576). Adelaide, South Australia: Wakefield Press.
2001 Foster, R. (2001). Logic (Pinba). In W. Prest, K. Round & C. Fort (Eds.), The Wakefield Companion to South Australian History (pp. 322-322). Adelaide, South Australia: Wakefield Press.
2001 Foster, R. (2001). Matthew Moorhouse. In The Wakefield Companion to South Australian History Kent Town S.A.: Wakefield Press.
2001 Foster, R. (2001). Aboriginal Ration Depots. In The Wakefield Companion to South Australian History Kent Town, S.A.: Wakefield Press.
2001 Foster, R. (2001). Aboriginal Policy and Administration. In The Wakefield Companion to South Australian History Kent Town SA: Wakefield Press.
2001 Foster, R. (2001). William Henry Willshire. In The Wakefield Companion to South Australian History (pp. 585-586). Kent Town S.A.: Wakefield Press.
2001 Foster, R. (2001). Edward Bates Scott. In The Wakefield Companion to South Australian History Kent Town S.A.: Wakefield Press.

Conference Papers

Year Citation
2006 Foster, R. (2006). Historical narratives and Aboriginal rights. State History Conference. Adelaide, South Australia.
2004 Foster, R. & Nettelbeck, A. (2004). 'White indigeneity' in the life and writings of constable William Willshire. Placing Race and Localising Whiteness. S. Schech & B. Wadham (Eds.) Flinders University, South Australia.
2002 Foster, R. (2002). Aboriginal Rights on Pastoral Lands in South Australia, 1851-1960. Canberra, ACT.
2002 Foster, R. & Nettelbeck, A. (2002). Writing William Willshire. State History Association Conference. Adelaide, South Australia.
2001 Foster, R. (2001). Rations, Co-existence, and the Colonization of Aboriginal Labour in the South Australian Pastoral Industry, 1860-1911. Property Rights in the Colonial Imagination and Experience. British Columbia, Canada.

Memberships

Date Role Membership Country
1999 - ongoing Member Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies Australia

Board Memberships

Date Role Board name Institution name Country
2017 - 2020 Advisory Board Member State Records Council Australia
Position
Associate Professor
Phone
83135616
Fax
8313 4341
Campus
North Terrace
Building
Napier Building
Room Number
5 10
Org Unit
History

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