Welcome to the Johnson Society of Australia
President's Report August 2018 Print E-mail
Written by Ian Keese   
Tuesday, 14 August 2018 08:40

With the current issue of the Southern Johnsonian, the Johnson Society of Australia enters its 25th year and we remain a strong organisation, maintaining at least four events each year. So far this year we have had our Gallery visit and our Seminar.

Please put into your calendars the remaining two dates. November 10th will be a particularly significant event for two reasons. The first is that the Fleeman Lecture will be delivered by our own John Byrne, immediate Past President and one of our founding members. John will be reflecting on his own lifetime journey with Johnson and his circle. The second reason is that this will be the official celebration of our Silver Anniversary, and a special booklet will be prepared to celebrate this, including memorabilia from the last 25 years. The venue will be finalised closer to the event. Please invite as many former Johnsonians as you can to this event.

The second event is our Christmas Celebration at the Mitre Tavern on the afternoon of Saturday 1st December. Expect food, fun and fellowship in this intimate venue.

We are rapidly catching up on our publishing program, thanks to Paul Tankard, and with assistance from Meredith Sherlock from Ancora Press. Last year Kate Burridge’s lecture on advertising - Magnificence of Promises - was published; so far this year we have published Volume 16 of our papers and I hope that Gordon Turnbull’s Fleeman Lecture will be available by the time of our AGM. Paul is now working on Volume 17 of our papers.

On the financial front, over recent years we have built up a very healthy balance, largely because of good management by Barrie Sheppard but also because of a lull in the number of publications. However this year there have been many challenges. Scots Church both raised the booking fee and insisted that we took out Liability Insurance, and despite all our best efforts to get a good price this Insurance cost us $250 for just one day! (If anyone knows where we could get a better deal let me know!). Because Bronwen used professional actors for the presentation of her play and they spent the Saturday before the Seminar rehearsing as well as performing on the day, we believed that they had to be paid. Finally, quality printing of this Newsletter is more expensive than black and white photocopies.

We will be discussing finance at our next committee meeting, but for the Financial Year 2018-2019 our subscription will remain at $50.00 and $40.00 for students or those on Social Security. For methods of payment see the Secretary’s report on the next page.

We always welcome contributions to the newsletter from members. In this issue, as well reports on John Byrne’s adventure and collecting we have an article by Paul Tankard on the Boswell Book Festival and an item suggested by Lisa Sherrif on Jane Austen manuscripts which are now available online.

2017 Fleeman Lecture Print E-mail
Written by Ian Keese   
Wednesday, 06 September 2017 12:32

2017 Fleeman Lecture

The 2017 Fleeman Lecture will be held on Saturday 11 November, beginning at 3:00 pm following the AGM.

This year's distinguished lecturer is Professor Karen Green from Melbourne University who will focus on the 18th Century Historian, Catherine Macaulay and her relationship with Samuel Johnson. The venue (to be confirmed) will be the Robert White Meeting Room at the Scots Church,Collins Street.

2016 Fleeman Lecture Print E-mail
Written by Ian Keese   
Saturday, 03 September 2016 12:35

Professor Emeritus John Carroll on

Dr Johnson and the Great Anglo Tradition

5:00 pm, Saturday 15th October

Tonic House, 386 Flinders Lane Melbourne

John Carroll’s work focuses on culture, and its crucial role in the human search for meaning, with particular reference to the modern Western society.

He will be arguing that England produced the two things that have made the modern world: industrialisation and parliamentary democracy. It developed the language that has become universal. From Waterloo on, it has not lost a major war. A particular culture has framed this achievement, one projected by leading figures from Tyndale and Shakespeare to Darwin and Churchill. Dr Johnson has a special place in the Anglo pantheon.

His recent books include: 'The Wreck of Western Culture—Humanism Revisited' and 'The Existential Jesus'; His latest book  'Land of the Golden Cities—Australia’s Exceptional Prosperity and the Culture that Made It' will be published this year .


For more information about this event or the Johnson Society, contact the Secretary, Ian Keese: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Exciting New Publication Print E-mail
Written by Ian Keese   
Tuesday, 05 September 2017 16:27

We are pleased to advise that Professor Kate Burridge's Fleeman Lecture, 'Magnificence of Promises': Samuel Johnson and advertising has now been published. This is a fascinating exploration of the early history of advertising in England, and includes eleven reproductions of eighteenth century advertisements. The essay opens with Johnson's quote from The Idler 'Promise, large Promise, is the soul of an advertisement'

Kate Burridge is Professor of Linguistics at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia.

Copies are available for $A35.00, including postage form The Secretary, Johnson Society of Australia, PO Box 79, Doncaster, VIC, 3108 Australia

JSA 2016 Seminar Print E-mail
Written by Ian Keese   
Thursday, 30 June 2016 16:52

The Johnson Society of Australia Inc
Annual Seminar
Saturday 30 July 2016
11:00 am—4:00 pm  (Registration from 10:30 am)

The English Speaking Union
146 Toorak Rd West  South Yarra
$30 members and $35 non-members 
Includes tea, coffee and lunch. Drinks available at Bar prices

Major Papers

The Obelisk and the Asterisk by Professor Kate Burridge

This will explore the way certain ‘less acceptable’ words were classified in some of the dictionaries that preceded Samuel Johnson’s masterpiece.

‘Milking the Bull’ – Samuel Johnson, David Hume and Religious belief by Ian Keese

This will look at aspects of Johnson’s sometimes troubled relationship with religious belief.

Shorter Presentations:

These will include Professor Tim Entwisle, Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria talking about he discovered Samuel Johnson and the influence Johnson has had on him and the lexicographer Nick Hudson engaging participants in an exploration of what Johnson know about grammar.

Join a wide range of people for enjoyable scholarship

Inquiries: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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