Lager University Conference of the ‘Doc’

Academic readers of Hummer will already know that in July 1990 (doesn’t private enterprise act swiftly?) David Day of Bond University is planning a conference on Dr H. V. Evatt. This is a cause for concern for all those interested in Australian labour history and the ‘Doc’ specifically. Confidential opinion obtained from informed sources suggests that the conference will be an attempt to ‘get Evatt’. The conference participants so far are all establishment diplomatic historians from institutions like Rutgers University, Foreign Affairs and ADFA. So what should labour historians do? Attend and present a defence of Dr Evatt? Or boycott it? Evatt’s official historian, Ken Buckley, has chosen the latter course of action, describing the conference as a ‘fizzer’. He regards Alan Bond as the unacceptable face of Australian capitalism and wants nothing to do with anything designed to promote the public image of his university. It is Duncan Waterson of Macquarie University’s opinion that ‘this is one of the most outstanding items of hypocrisy, time-serving and capitalist appropriation it has ever been my experience to see in 25 years in the trade. Poor old Doc! Professor Waterson suggests that Hummer obtain and publish a list of paper givers and attenders. Hummer approves of this idea and awaits ‘intelligence’ from readers.