CQUniversity Australia

Engaging Indigenous people within Higher Ed

CQUniversity's Office of Indigenous Engagement recently hosted a visit from the Oodgeroo Unit of Queensland University of Technology (QUT), at Rockhampton Campus.

Professor Anita Lee Hong, Director of the Oodgeroo Unit, and Lone Pearce, Project Officer, met with Office of Indigenous Engagement staff to discuss employment issues and best practice models for engaging Indigenous people within the higher education sector, including governance matters.

Full Details…

Cooking up rich returns for research overseas 

CQUniversity PhD candidate Jillian Adams has just returned after five weeks researching and presenting her research in Britain and the USA...

PhotoID:14936, Dione Lucas pictured during one of her TV shows. LINK for larger image
Dione Lucas pictured during one of her TV shows. LINK for larger image

Whilst researching Australian cookbooks from the 1950s for her studies, Jillian found a book of Cordon Bleu recipes presented to Australian women by Mrs Dione Lucas, a television celebrity chef in the USA.

PhotoID:14937, Researcher Jillian Adams - LINK for larger image
Researcher Jillian Adams - LINK for larger image

This book piqued her interest and she has since discovered that Dione Lucas's tour of Australian capital cities in July 1956 was more about promoting television and television sales to women than it was about her expertise in Cordon Bleu cooking.

LINK for ABC interview with Jillian about Uncovering the history in cookbooks

Jillian presented her findings at the Women and Television conference at Warwick University (May 15-17) and an article on her findings - which change our popular memory of the start of television, presenting housewives and their interest in cooking as critical to its success - will be published in The Journal of Popular Television.

Whilst in Britain, Jillian interviewed Dione Lucas's son Mark Lucas, visited Cordon Bleu's London school and did some research at the London Library's newspaper archive. Dione Lucas is believed to have started Cordon Bleu's London school with Rosemary Hume and Jillian was seeking information to confirm this.

She also travelled to Penrith (England), where she attended a weekend workshop with Ivan Day on historic roasting. This proved to be a wonderful introduction to her next course, which was a workshop run by culinary historian Barbara Ketcham Wheaton at the Schlesinger Library at Harvard University in Cambridge USA.

PhotoID:14938, A demonstration of spit roasting
A demonstration of spit roasting

Ketcham Wheaton has, for the past 10 years, conducted a course on using cookbooks as historical sources. Ivan Day's course was a practical roasting course where antique spit roasting equipment was used to roast meat prepared according to 15th-18th century cookbooks, including beef stuffed with greens, a collop of venison and a chicken stuffed with mango.

At Harvard, the group of students in Ketcham Wheaton's class systematically analysed early British and American cookbooks searching for social and cultural information. Having cooked from these recipes and tasted some of the dishes, Jillian had a sensory appreciation of the foods in the cookbooks she studied with Ketcham Wheaton. Jillian hopes to apply this learning to her analysis of post-war Australian cookbooks.

PhotoID:14939, Dione Lucas shows her viewers how to make omelette
Dione Lucas shows her viewers how to make omelette

Whist in USA, Jillian met with culinary historian Laura Scapiro, television history author Kathleen Collins and biographer Jeanne Schinto; visited the Culinary Institute of America and was shown the culinary collection at New York University's Fales Library; spoke on the culinary history radio program about Dione Lucas; and spent time at the New York Public Library where she found a treasure trove of material on Dione Lucas in The New Yorker archive.

Jillian's book A Good Brew is about H. A. Bennett and Sons, a family business established in Melbourne in 1912 importing tea and coffee. Underpinning the business history is the story of how Australians changed from dedicated tea drinkers, to coffee drinkers in the post war period. It will be published on June 30, and launched in Melbourne. 

Jillian is planning to write a biography of Dione Lucas as a post doctoral project (based in the School of Education and the Arts). She is enrolled as a distance student but often works out of CQUniversity Noosa Campus with her supervisors.

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