Submissions are invited for the edited volume The First Wave: Exploring Early Coastal Contact History in Australia. The European maritime explorers who first visited the bays and beaches of Australia brought with them a wide range of assumptions about the inhabitants of the country, most of them based on sketchy or non-existent knowledge, contemporary theories like the idea of the noble savage, and an automatic belief of the superiority of European civilization.

Gillian Dooley and Danielle Clode, the editors of this collection, invite contributions of original research and creative work on the dynamics of these early encounters, from all perspectives. We are particularly interested in the ways these visitations have survived in cultural memory (oral or written) or are remembered in dance, song, or art.

We intentionally limit the scope to explorers rather than settlers and encounters on the coast of Australia, although other situations could be included for comparative purposes.

We welcome contributions from historians, anthropologists, archaeologists, literary and cultural scholars, linguists, art historians, creative writers, and others with an informed interest in the topic.

Themes to be discussed might include:

  • contemporary European ideas about Aboriginal peoples and cultures
  • particular incidents in the early exploration contact history
  • interpretations or reinterpretations of Aboriginal responses to European explorers
  • cultural or other differences between Aboriginal peoples encountered
  • cultural or other differences between the European cultures represented by the various explorers (across time, country of origin, class, etc.)
  • the importance and role of interpreters (such as Bungaree) who traveled with the explorers

Please send expressions of interest and 250-word abstracts to by 30 September 2016. Final chapters of 6,000–9,000 words are due by 30 June 2017.