The University of Western Australia will host the nation's second dedicated Chair in Australian Literature with the appointment of Associate Professor Philip Mead.
Associate Professor Philip Mead is the former Coordinator of English at the University of Tasmania and Lockie Fellow in Creative Writing and Australian Literature at the University of Melbourne. He was also poetry editor of the prestigious quarterly magazine Meanjin, founded in Brisbane in 1940 and credited with having introduced controversial writers such as Arthur Miller, Anais Nin, Ezra Pound and Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn to the Australian public.
His research interests are in Australian poetry, Anglophone poetics, literary regionalism, national bibliography, representations of Australian space and Shakespearean heritage in Australia.
As a Professor within UWA's Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, Philip Mead will play an important role in developing Australia's cultural and intellectual capital, enabling Australian literature to regain its place as a vibrant and vital component of the nation's cultural life, the University's Vice-Chancellor Professor Alan Robson said.
"UWA's School of English and Cultural Studies is one of the strongest in Australian literature and creative writing in Australia, and continues our proud tradition of being at the forefront of national literary development," Professor Robson said.
"UWA's unique position on the western rim of the continent and the eastern rim of the Indian Ocean fosters a unique cultural and artistic perspective on art and literature."
Professor Robson said the role of the Chair is to provide national and international leadership in the study and appreciation of Australia's creative writers and their work, taking Australian literature to national and international audiences.
"The importance of the Chair in shaping the future direction of teaching in literature, from schools to universities, should not be under-estimated," Professor Robson said.
Associate Professor Mead has recently completed a study of Australian poetry entitled Networked Language: Culture and History in Australian Poetry. He is currently finishing a book about Australian poetics with UWA's Professor John Kinsella.
He will take up his role as Professor and Chair in Australian Literature later this year.
Associate Professor Philip Mead (+61 4) 17 125 299
Sally-Ann Jones (UWA Public Affairs) (+61 8) 6488 7975 / (+61 4) 20 790 098