Woman Woollacott, Angela


Written by Sharon M. Harrison, The University of Melbourne

Angela Woollacott is a leader in the history profession who has contributed to Australian history and the history of the British Empire, especially white settler colonialism, postcolonial history, women's and gender history, modernity and transnational histories.

Born in Adelaide on 16 July 1955, to Mollie Gweneth Woollacott (née Scales) and Lloyd Smith Woollacott, she was educated in Adelaide attending Highgate Primary School and Unley High School. She completed a Bachelor of Arts, with majors in Political Science and History, at the Australian National University (ANU) in 1978, before transferring to the University of Adelaide where she graduated with Honours in History in 1979. After completing her undergraduate studies, Woollacott was employed as a Research Officer at the Constitutional Museum of South Australia, Adelaide, producing the major exhibition Land Rights Now: A History of Aboriginal Land Rights in South Australia (September 1981-December 1982). She undertook postgraduate study in the United States of America, completing a MA in History and PhD at the University of California, Santa Barbara, in 1984 and 1988 respectively.

From 1983 until 1987, Woollacott worked as a Teaching Assistant and Research Assistant in the History Department at the University of California, Santa Barbara. After completing her doctoral studies, she was appointed Assistant Professor of History at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio. Woollacott held various positions at Case Western Reserve University: Director of the Women's Studies Program (1992-1994); Associate Chair (1996); Associate Director of the Baker-Nord Center for the Humanities (1997-1999); Associate Dean of the College of Art and Sciences (1999-2001); Associate Professor of History (1994); and full Professor (2001). Between 2004 and 2009 she was Professor of Modern History at Macquarie University before moving to the Australian National University where she is the Manning Clark Professor of History).

Woollacott was elected a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society in 1994 and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Social Sciences in 2006. She has served on the editorial boards of the Journal of Women's History (2002-2010) and the Journal of British Studies (2005-2010) and is on the international advisory board of Settler Colonial Studies and the editorial advisory board of Lilith: A Feminist History Journal. She was a member of the Australian Historical Association Executive Committee from 2004 until 2008 and currently serves as the Association's Vice President (2010-2014).

Woollacott is the author of: Race and the Modern Exotic: Three 'Australian' Women on Global Display (2011); Gender and Empire (2006); To Try Her Fortune in London: Australian Women, Colonialism, and Modernity (2001); and On Her Their Lives Depend: Munitions Workers in the Great War (1994). She is also series editor, Years 7, 8, 9 and 10 high school textbooks for the National Curriculum in History: Woollacott et al., History for the Australian Curriculum (2012).

Additional sources: Personal communication between Angela Woollacott and Sharon M. Harrison.

Published Resources


  • Woollacott, Angela, Race and the Modern Exotic, Monash University Publishing, Melbourne, Victoria, 2011. Details

Journal Articles

  • Woollacott, Angela, 'From Moral to Professional Authority: Secularism, Social Work and Middle-Class Women's Self-construction in World War I Britain', Journal of Women’s History, vol. 10, no. 2, 1998, pp. 85 - 111. Details

Online Resources

See also