Who is the real Elizabeth Macarthur?

Kate Grenville’s recent historical novel Room Made of Leaves is the latest life story of Elizabeth Macarthur, joining biographies in 2018 (Michelle Scott Tucker), 1991 (Lennard Bickel) and 1980 (Hazel King). If Tucker’s book was creative non fiction and Grenville’s book is biographical fiction – where does the truth lie? If one of the historical literacies is empathy, what makes an historical narrative either fiction or non fiction? Looking at the life of Elizabeth Macarthur through all the tumult of marriage to the ultimate puppet master, we will explore some of the key issues at the heart of recording history.

This course will be delivered both face-to-face at WEA Sydney and online via the online platform Zoom simultaneously. Enrolling students need to ensure they have an email, a reliable internet connection, microphone/speakers and access to a tablet, smartphone or computer if they are attending via Zoom or have read the current COVID-19 Safety Guidance that WEA Sydney has put in place before enrolling into the face-to-face class.

SUGGESTED READING

  • Australian Dictionary of Biography, Jill Conway (1967)
  • Elizabeth Macarthur and Her World, Hazel King (1980)
  • Australia’s First Lady: The Story of Elizabeth Macarthur, Lennard Bickel (1991)
  • Females on the Fatal Shore, Susanna de Vries (2009)
  • Elizabeth Macarthur: a life at the edge of the world, Michelle Scott Tucker (2018)
  • Room Made of Leave, Kate Grenville (2020)

COURSE OUTLINE

  • The life of Elizabeth Macarthur: Early life (1766-1788), Second Fleet (1789-1792), Elizabeth Farm (1793-1800), Paterson duel (1800-1804), Rum Rebellion (1804-1816), John’s return (1817-1834), Widow (1834-1850)
  • The history of the study of history: Ancient world – medieval chronicles and annals, Age of Enlightenment, 19th century academic history, Historical specialities, New histories (1970s), History wars, Historical literacies
  • Biographies of Elizabeth Macarthur

PLANNED LEARNING OUTCOMES

By the end of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Know the life and significance of Elizabeth Macarthur
  2. Compare and assess the Elizabeth Macarthur biographies
  3. Evaluate the relative importance of sources and empathy in constructing historical narratives
  4. Investigate the relationship between truth, history, and story making
$39 Limited

<p>Kate Grenville’s recent historical novel <em>Room Made of Leaves</em> is the latest life story of Elizabeth Macarthur, joining biographies in 2018 (Michelle Scott Tucker), 1991 (Lennard Bickel) and

...
18 Jun
$39 Limited

<p>Kate Grenville’s recent historical novel <em>Room Made of Leaves</em> is the latest life story of Elizabeth Macarthur, joining biographies in 2018 (Michelle Scott Tucker), 1991 (Lennard Bickel) and

...
18 Jun

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