Welcome to the Johnson Society of Australia
Johnson and Swift in Wales Print E-mail
Written by Barrie Sheppard   
Friday, 02 November 2012 11:18

Our eighteenth Annual Fleeman Memorial Lecture was given at the 2012 AGM by inaugural President, Emeritus Professor Clive Probyn. Clive is a renowned international scholar of the 18the Century, specialising in Jonathon Swift and Dr Johnson.

He has also done distinguished scholarly work editing the novels of Australia’s Henry Handel Richardson, and is the winner of the prestigious Centennial Medal for Service to English and Australian Literature. He has published more than 20 books.

Clive treated members and friends to an engaging, scholarly account of Johnson's and Swift's view of Wales and the Welch, as revealed in their travel writings and letters.

New President for the JSA Print E-mail
Written by Barrie Sheppard   
Friday, 02 November 2012 11:04

John Byrne is the new President of the Johnson Society of Australia, after his election at the Society’s Annual General Meeting on October 13.

John is a foundation member of the JSA, having joined at the seminar conducted in conjunction with the Council of Adult Education in Melbourne in 1993, when he was elected the Society’s Treasurer.


John is Australia’s leading private collector of Johnson and Johnsoniana, and was a barrister in Perth before retiring this year to his home state of Victoria, where his house in Castlemaine accommodates his book collection in a purpose-built library.

2012 Fleeman Lecture at Cocktail Hour Print E-mail
Written by Bryan Reid   
Wednesday, 27 June 2012 15:16

The Foundation President of the JSA, Emeritus Professor Clive Probyn, will be guest speaker for this year's David Fleeman Memorial Lecture.

The Lecture, entitled Terra Incognita: Jonathan Swift, Samuel Johnson and Wild Wales, will begin at 6.00 pm. on Saturday October 13. following the Annual General Meeting which will begin with registration at 5.15pm

Clive Probyn was Professor of English at Monash University from 1982 to 2009. and is now Emeritus Professor at Monash.

He is also a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities and in 2004 was awarded the Centennial Medal for services to English and Australian Literature.

He is author or editor of more than twenty books, including four on Jonathan Swift. He wrote new entries for Swift, among others, for the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography and is an Advisory Board member of the Ehrenpreis Center, Münster, Germany.

Exciting program for JSA Seminar 2012 Print E-mail
Written by Bryan Reid   
Wednesday, 27 June 2012 15:11

The Johnson Society of Australia’s 2012 Annual Seminar offers an exciting program of lectures, “stub papers” and other presentations, following the pattern which has won universal support from members.

The seminar is being held on Saturday, July 7, at the usual venue, the English Speaking Union of Australia, 146 West Toorak Road, South Yarra.

Registration begins at 10.30am with the first paper to be delivered at 11.00.

The fee for the seminar is $30 for members and $35 for non-members, and includes lunch, as well as morning and afternoon teas.

Speakers include some who have entertained and informed us at past seminars, and this year there is a new face and voice, Peter Appleyard, an expert on “Junius”, who will explore the identity of the mysterious 18th Century letter writer.

2011 Annual Seminar Print E-mail
Written by Bryan Reid   
Tuesday, 26 April 2011 10:37

The 17th Annual Seminar of The Johnson Society of Australia will he held on Saturday July 9 at the usual venue, the English Speaking Union, beginning with registration at 11am and the first paper to be delivered at 11.30.
The program, which continues to follow the format introduced two years ago, comprises three full-length papers and four “stub” papers – the feature which has proved so popular with our audiences.
We are honoured this year to welcome the distinguished  scholar, Dr Chloe Chard,  a literary historian who lives in London, and who has published widely on travel writing and art criticism. Dr Chard’s paper is concerned with the book written by Mrs Hester Piozzi (Thrale) about her European tour, Observations and Reflections Made in the Course of a Journey through France, Italy, and Germany (1789). 

Other  speakers will be Daniel Vuillemin, who puts the case for a special joint biography of Samuel Johnson and Sir Joshua Reynolds, and Barbara Niven , who will talk about the development of the forte-piano in the 18th Century and its subsequent influence on music generally.

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