Women Lecturers


As part of the research for my MA thesis on itinerant lecturer, journalist and women’s rights activist Miss HELEN HART, I examined the classified advertisement columns headed ‘Meetings & Lectures’ of The Age newspaper of Melbourne Australia, for the period 1880-1905. To my surprise I found that the names of many women appeared in these advertisements – either as lecturer or as secretary or committee member of various organisations. I also examined the classified advertisements under the heading ‘Religious Notices’ for part of the 1880s, and found yet more women’s names.  A number of these women do not appear to have advertised in The Argus.

Clearly, there were many women involved in public life, and yet little has been written about most of them. I thought initially to include a chapter on some of these women in my thesis, but it became unnecessary as sufficient material emerged on Hart.

Rather than leave the information in a filing cabinet, however, I have placed the names of these women, and the subjects on which they spoke, on this webpage. As an independent researcher, I cannot afford to simply give the full detail away, so I ask a small fee to provide full details of the dates the advertisements for each individual women appeared.

The advertisements give a date and place of the lecture, and thus may lead to reports and further details of the women concerned. While most of the women were based in Melbourne, there are references to interstate and overseas visitors, and I have included this detail where possible.

The information supplied may be for one reference date only, or could refer to a number of dates, spread over several years. The Age newspaper itself is widely available on microfilm.

If you are interested in obtaining the full detail, please send a stamped, self-addressed envelope if in Australia, or two International Reply Paid Coupons if overseas, together with payment of $Aust45, to: Helen D. Harris OAM, P.O. Box 92, Forest Hill, Victoria, Australia, 3131.

A big thank you to Annabel Anderson, who provided additional information on Helen Hart’s activities in Tasmania, and for whom I have no address. My biography of Helen Hart was launched on 31 March 2009 – details are on the Harriland Press page.

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