Retro-Future: Adapting a Medieval Process as a Means to Redefine Contemporary (Australian) Society
Research involving the field of history typically has been thought to reside within the traditional sphere of history departments. Current thinking challenges this, and researching history is becoming less conformist in approach and methodology and is beginning to encompass discourse beyond the boundaries that have been conventionally considered its domain. This paper will outline the role Bestiaries have played in the moral and social development of the Western World and how this particular traditional approach might be applied in an Australian context. Then to interpret neglected, ignored or overlooked aspects or characteristics within Australian history that can shed light about our past from a new perspective, re-defining or re-configuring perceptions of memory, imagination and reality about ourselves. In this way we might usefully retain the wisdom of the past and revive memories of our cultural heritage in the contemporary world.
Keywords: Bestiary, Identity, History, Culture
Associate Prof. Allan R. Mann
Associate Professor, Arts Academy, University of Ballarat
His career in higher education began at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design (Dundee University) prior to emigrating to Australia in the mid-1970's, where he has lectured in visual art at the University of Southern Queensland (D.D.I.A.E.) Queensland; Charles Sturt University (R.I.A.E.) NSW and currently in Victoria at the University of Ballarat's Arts Academy, where he co-ordinates the Honours and Graduate programmes.
His research interests include Australian regional print collections; Artist Books and animals and creatures in print.
He has exhibited widely and published both conference papers and journal articles.