This podcast series is about Australia’s relations with and response to the world from the late 19th Century to the present. It focuses on the historical, cultural, ideological, economic and strategic factors shaping the government’s foreign and defence policies. It looks first at historical themes that still have a bearing on Australia in the contemporary world, then moves on to discuss how Australian politicians and policymakers have reacted to and acted in periods of war and stress, crisis and creativity, hope and delusion. It looks at the role of prime ministers, individual ministers and political parties, the globalising economy, trade, immigration and debates over alliances, Asia, and national loyalty.

Written and presented by Professor James Curran from the University of Sydney (Discipline of History) , who is also the International Editor at The Australian Financial Review.

 The podcasts were produced by Peter Adams from the School of Humanities at the University of Sydney. 

The podcasts are copyright by the University of Sydney and the author retains rights to their material. 

Latest Episodes

New Maturity

 This episode explores how in response to changes in America’s East Asia policy and the course of the Vietnam war, Australian governments, particularly that of Labor P...

The Great Powers retreat from Asia

Now comes the reassessment. In this episode, I begin to explore the breakdown of the bi-polar ideological world and the decision of Australia’s ‘Great and Powerful Fri...

Indonesia’s Confrontation of Malaysia and war in Vietnam

Following on from the previous episode, this episode looks at the Indonesian Confrontation with Malaysia over the future of the British territories in Borneo, Sarawak ...

The rise of Asian nationalism

This episode is about Australia and the National Independence movements in Southeast Asian region, the issue which above all dominated Australian defence and foreign p...

Australia and the coming of the Cold War

This episode explores how Australia responded to the two great defining developments which dominated its international environment from the end of World War Two until ...

More Episodes »
Broadcast by