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Centre for Research on Social Inclusion

Prof Deborah Rose

BA Delaware, MA, PhD Bryn Mawr College

Professor of Social Inclusion

Phone:  +61 (0)2 9850 1820
Fax:  +61 (0)2 9850 4432
Office:  C5C Research Hub West, Room 377


Deborah Rose is Professor of Social Inclusion, a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia, and a foundation member of both Ecological Humanities and the Extinction Studies Working Group. Her current research focuses on multi-sited, multispecies ethnographies in zones of extinction.

She is the author of several prize-winning books, including the recently re-released ethnography Dingo Makes Us Human (Cambridge University Press, 2009)  and Reports from a Wild Country: Ethics for Decolonisation (UNSW Press, 2004). She has worked with Aboriginal people in their claims to land and in other decolonising contexts, and in both scholarly and practical arenas her work is focused on the convergence of social and ecological justice. Her new book is Wild Dog Dreaming: Love and Extinction, published by University of Virginia Press (March 2011) in their series 'Under the Sign of Nature: Explorations in Ecocriticism'.

Research interests

Extinction Studies, Ecological Humanities, Animals and Society, Indigenous Philosophies.

Current & Recent Positions

2008 - Professor of Social Inclusion, Centre for Research on Social Inclusion, Macquarie University, Sydney.

2000-2008 Senior Fellow, Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies, Fenner School of Environment and Society, ANU, Canberra.

1998-2000 Senior Fellow, Anthropology Department, Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, ANU.

Major Publications


2011 Wild Dog Dreaming: Love and Extinction, University of Virginia Press, Charlottesville. (Published in the series 'Under the Sign of Nature: Explorations in Ecocriticism'

2009 Dingo Makes Us Human; Life and land in an Australian Aboriginal Culture. New in Paperback,  Cambridge University Press (third printing, digital edition; first edition: 1992, Winner of the 1994 Stanner Award)

2005 Dislocating the Frontier: Essaying the Mystique of the Outback, co-edited with Richard Davis, ANU E-Press, Canberra.

2004 Reports from a Wild Country: Ethics for Decolonisation, University of New South Wales Press, Sydney. Shortlisted for the NSW Premier's Award and the Gleebooks Prize for Critical Writing.

2002 Country of the Heart: An Indigenous Australian Homeland, Aboriginal Studies Press, Canberra.

2000 Dingo Makes Us Human; Life and land in an Australian Aboriginal Culture. New in Paperback, Cambridge University Press. Winner of the 1992/3 Stanner Prize.

1998 Tracking Knowledge in North Australian Landscapes; studies in indigenous and settler knowledge systems, edited with Anne Clarke, NARU, Darwin.

1996 Nourishing Terrains: Australian Aboriginal views of Landscape and Wilderness, Australian Heritage Commission, Canberra.

1995 Country in Flames; Proceedings of the 1994 symposium on biodiversity and fire in North Australia. Biodiversity Unit, Department of the Environment, Sport and Territories and the North Australia Research Unit, The Australian National University, Canberra and Darwin. 

1992 Dingo Makes Us Human; Life and land in an Australian Aboriginal Culture. Cambridge University Press. First printing.

1991 Hidden Histories. Black Stories from Victoria River Downs, Humbert River, and Wave Hill stations, North Australia.  Aboriginal Studies Press, Canberra.

1988 The Shape of the Dreaming. The cultural significance of Victoria River rock art, co-authored with Darrell Lewis. Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies, Canberra.

1998 Tracking Knowledge in North Australian Landscapes; studies in indigenous and settler knowledge systems, co-edited with Annie Clark. North Australia Research Unit, Darwin.

1988 Aboriginal Australians and Christian Missions; Ethnographic and Historical Studies, co-edited with Tony Swain, Australian Association for the Study of Religions, Bedford Park, SA.

Books in Translation

2003 Nourishing Terrains; Australian Aboriginal views of Landscape and Wilderness, Australian Heritage Commission, Canberra. Now published in Japanese by Heibonsha Press, Translated by Dr Minoru Hokari.

Major Reports

2003 Sharing Kinship with Nature: How Reconciliation is Transforming the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, National Parks and Wildlife Service, NSW, Sydney.

2003 Indigenous Kinship with the Natural World, co-authored with Diana James and Chris Watson, National Parks and Wildlife Service, NSW, Sydney.

1995 The Kenbi (Cox Peninsula) Land Claim; Senior Anthropologist's Report on behalf of the Tommy Lyons Group, Northern Land Council, Darwin.

1993 Kamu People, Kamu Country; Senior Anthropologist's Report on behalf of the Kamu People, Northern Land Council, Darwin.

1990 Gulaga: A Report on the Cultural Significance of Mt Dromedary to Aboriginal People, Presented to the Forestry Commission of New South Wales and the New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service.

Recent Book Chapters

Forthcoming, 'Ruined Faces', in The Faces of Nature: Levinasian Ethics and the Environment, James Hatley, William Edelglas and Christian Diehm (eds), Duquesne University Press, Pittsburgh.

2011 'Conflict Resolution and Decolonisation: Aboriginal Australian case studies in 'enlarged thinking',' in Morgan Brigg and Roland Bleiker, eds, Mediating Across Difference: Oceanic and Asian Approaches to Conflict Resolution, pp.100-114, University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu.

2010 Harrison, R. and D.B. Rose 'Intangible heritage'. In T. Benton (ed) Understanding heritage and memory. Manchester University Press in association with the Open University, Manchester and Milton Keynes; pp. 238-276.

2009 'Writing Place', in Ann Curthoys & Ann McGrath (eds), Writing histories: imagination and narration (updated edition, electronic), pp. 08.1-08.13, Monash University EPress, Melbourne. 

2009 'Journey to sacred ground: ethics and aesthetics of Country' in Makarand Paranjape (ed) Sacred Australia: Post-Secular Considerations, Clouds of Magellan, Melbourne.

2009 'Rainbirds: organising the country' in Libby Robin, Robert Heinsohn & Leo Joseph (eds) Boom and Bust: Bird Stories for a Dry Country, pp. 185-204, CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne.

2008 'Mates Together: Dancing with Difference', in Vin D'Cruz, Bernie Neville, Devika Goonewardene and Phillip Darby eds, As Others see Us: The Values Debate in Austalia, Australian Scholarly Publishing, Melbourne.

2008 'Bobby's Face, My Love', in S. Murali, ed, Nature and Human Nature: Literature, Ecology, Meaning, Prestige Books, New Delhi.

2008  'Ethics of Attention', in Pulling the Right Threads: The Ethnographic Life and Legacy of Jane C. Goodale, L. Zimmer-Tamakoshi and J Dickerson-Putnam, eds, University of Illinois Press, Urbana, pp. 110-122.

2008  'Journeys: Distance, Proximity and Death' in Anna Haebich and Baden Offerd, eds. Landscapes of Exile, Peter Lang, London, pp. 149-156.

2007 'Justice and Longing', in Fresh Water: New Perspectives on water in Australia, Emily Potter, Alison Mackinnon, Stephen McKenzie and Jennifer McKay, eds, Melbourne University Press, Melbourne, pp. 8-20.

2007 'Recursive Epistemologies and an Ethics of Attention', in Extraordinary Anthropology: Transformations in the Field. J-G Goulet and B Miller, eds, University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln, pp. 88-102.

2006 'New World Poetics of Place: along the Oregon Trail and in the National Museum of Australia',  in Making History Memorable: Past and Present in Settler Colonialism, A. Coombs, ed, Manchester University Press, pp. 228-244.

2005 'The Redemptive Frontier: A Long Road to Nowhere', in Dislocating the Frontier: Essaying the Mystique of the Outback, edited with Richard Davis, ANU E-Press, Canberra, pp. 49-65.

2005 'Life and Land in Aboriginal Australia' in Aboriginal Religions in Australia: An Anthropology of Recent Writings, M. Charlesworth, F. Dussart & H. Morphy, eds, Ashgate, Aldershot, pp. 205-216.

2005 'Indigenous Water Philosophy in an Uncertain Land', in From Disaster Response to Risk Management: Australia's National Drought Policy, Linda Botteril & Donald Wilhite, eds, Springer Publishers, Dordrecht, pp. 37-50.

2005 ''Rhythms, Patterns, Connectivities: Indigenous Concepts of Seasons and Change, Victoria River district, NT' in A Change in the Weather: Climate and Culture in Australia, T. Sherratt, T. Griffiths, & L. Robin, eds, National Museum of Australia, Canberra, pp, 32-41.

2005 'Anthropology: The Study of Humanity', in Understanding the Environment: Bridging the Disciplinary Divides, Quentin Grafton, Libby Robin and Robert Wasson, eds, UNSW Press, Sydney, pp. 23-39.

2004 'La revitalisatioin du pays et de la connectivité dans le mythe et le cérémonial aborigène australian' in Le mythe: practique, récits, théories, volume 4: Anthropologie et psychanalyse; L'enlèvement au Coeur du mythe, M. Zafiroppoulos & M. Boccara, eds, Economica, Paris, pp. 235-250.

2004 'Social Life and Spiritual Beliefs of the Simpson Desert Peoples', in Making Connections: A Journey along Central Australian Aboriginal trading routes, Val Donovan & Colleen Wall, eds, Arts Queensland, pp. 43-46.

2003 'Dance of the Ephemeral: Australian Aboriginal Religion of Place', in Experiences of Place, M. Macdonald, ed, Centre for the Study of World Religions, Harvard Divinity School, Harvard University, Cambridge, pp. 163-186

2003 'Oral Histories and Knowledge', in Frontier Conflict: The Australian Experience, B. Attwood & S. Foster, eds, National Museum of Australia, Canberra, pp. 120-131.

2003 'Decolonising the Discourse of Environmental Knowledge in Settler Societies', in Culture and Waste: The Creation and Destruction of Value, G. Hawkins & S. Muecke, eds, Rowman & Littlefield, Lanham, pp. 53-72.  

2002 'Sacred site, ancestral clearing, and environmental ethics', in Graham Harvey, ed, Readings in Indigenous Religions, Continuum, London, pp. 319-343 (Reprinted from 2001).

2002 'Reflections on the use of Historical Evidence in the Yorta Yorta Case', in History and Native Title, Mandy Paul and Geoffrey Gray, eds, Aboriginal Studies Press, Canberra.

2001 'The saga of Captain Cook: remembrance and morality', in B. Attwood and F. Magowan, eds, Telling Stories: Indigenous history and memory in Australia and New Zealand, Allan & Unwin, Sydney, pp 61-79.

2001 'The Silence and Power of Women', in P. Brock, ed, Words and Silences: Aboriginal Women, Land and Power, Allen & Unwin, Sydney, pp. 92-116.

2001 'Sacred Site, Ancestral Clearing, and Environmental Ethics' in A. Rumsey & J. Wiener, eds, Emplaced Myth: Space, Narrative, and Knowledge in Aboriginal Australia and Papua New Guinea Societies, University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu, pp. 99-119.

Refereed Articles

Forthcoming (2011), 'Flying Foxes: Kin, Keystone, Kontaminant' in Australian Humanities Review, special issue: 'Unloved Others: Death of the disregarded in the time of extinctions', Deborah Rose & Thom Van Dooren, eds.

Forthcoming (2011), 'Ravens at Play', in  Culture Theory and Critique, co-authored with Thom van Dooren and Stuart Cooke.

2010 Cameron Muir, Deborah Rose and Philip Sullivan 'From the other side of the knowledge frontier: Indigenous knowledge, social-ecological relationships and new perspectives, in The Rangeland Journal, 32, 3, 259-265

2008 'Judas Work: Four Modes of Sorrow', Environmental Philosophy, 5, 2, 51-66.

2008 'Dreaming Ecology: Beyond the between', Religion and Literature, 40 (1), 109-122.

2008 'Fitting into Country: Ecology and Economics in Indigenous Australia', Capitalism, Nature, Socialism, 19 (3), 117-121.

2008 'On history, trees and ethical proximity', Postcolonial Studies, Vol. 11, No. 2, pp. 157-167.

2007 Fischer, J., A.D. Manning, W. Steffen, D.B. Rose, K. Daniell, A. Felton, S. Garnett, B. Gilna, R. Heinsohn, D. Lindenmayer, B. MacDonald, F. Mills, B. Newell, J. Reid, L. Robin, K. Sherren and A. Wade (2007), 'Mind the Sustainability Gap', Trends in Ecology & Evolution, 22(12) doi:10.1016/j.physletb.2003.10.071.

2007 'Gendered Substance and Objects in Ritual: An Australian Study', Material Religion: the journal of objects, art and belief, 3 (1), 34-47.

2006 '"Moral friends" in the zone of disaster', Tamkang Review, 37 (1), 77-97.

2006 'What if the Angel of History were a Dog?' Cultural Studies Review, 12 (1), 67-78.

2005 'An Indigenous Philosophical Ecology: Situating the Human', The Australian Journal of Anthropology, 16 (3), 294-305.

2005 'Pattern, Connection, Desire: In Honour of Gregory Bateson', Australian Humanities Review, Issue 35, June.

2004 'The Ecological Humanities in Action: An Invitation', Australian Humanities Review, Issue 31-32, April.

2000. 'Dialogue with Place: toward an ecological body', Journal of Narrative Theory, 32 (3), 311-325.

Literary Publications

2010 'So the future can come forth from the ground' in Moral Ground: Ethical Action for a Planet in Peril, Kathleen Dean Moore & Michael Nelson (eds), pp. 154-157, Trinity University Press, San Antonio.

2009 'The Rivers of Babylon', in Stories of Belonging, Kali Wendorf (ed), pp. 42-54, Finch Publishing, Sydney (Reprinted from Manoa)

2008 At the Billabong [online] PAN: Philosophy Activism Nature; Issue 5; 59-61.

2006 'The Rivers of Babylon', Manoa, Winter, 18, 2, pp. 1-6.

2005 'Dingo Prayers', Island, 103, pp. 6-10.

Recent Encyclopaedia and Dictionary Entries

Online Media, Encyclopaedia and Dictionary entries

2010  'Extinctions', co-authored with Thom van Dooren, Encyclopedia of Geography, Barney Warf, ed, SAGE Publications, London.

2009 'Indigenous Religions - Australia', Berkshire Encyclopedia of Sustainability, Vol. 1: 'The Spirit of Sustainability', Willis Jenkins & Whitiney Bauman, eds, pp. 222-224. Berkshire's Sustainability Project; ISBN 978-1-933782-01-0)

2009 'Australian Aborigines',  Encyclopedia of Environmental Ethics and Philosophy, J. Baird Callicott & Robert Frodeman, eds, Gale, Glengage Learning, Detroit, pp. 80-83. 

2005 'Aboriginal Dreaming', Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature, Bron Taylor, ed, Continuum International Publishers, New York, (ISBN: 9781843711384), pp. 5-9.

Recent Media Outreach

2009 Interview with local television, Newcastle, NSW, in conjunction with the 'Minding Animals' Conference, 15 July.

2007 Interview material used in 'White Bone Country - Deserts', parts 1 & 2: Hindsight, ABC Radio National, 26 August, and 2 September.

2007 Interview material used in 'Sacred Water': Encounter, ABC Radio National, 27 May.

2006 Interview on the Philosopher's Zone (ABC), speaking about Emmanuel Levinas, 1 June.

2006 Interview as part of Radio Eye (ABC) program 'Tiger Country', produced by Susan Murphy, 25 February.

2005 Interview, Life Matters (ABC), 24 January.

Recent Public/Distinguished Lectures, Keynote Speeches

2010 The Fifth International Conference on Ecological Discourse - Ecocriticism in Asia: Reorienting Modernity, Reclaiming Nature?, Danshui, Taiwan, 16-19 December; Plenary Speech: 'Philosophical Animism and the Goodness of Creation'.

2010 'A Scholarly Affair', Annual conference of the Cultural Studies Association of Australasia, Byron Bay, NSW, 7-9 December; Plenary Speech: 'Slow Scholarship'

2010 'Changing the Climate: Utopia, Dystopia and Catastrophe', Melbourne, Monash University, 30 August-1 September, Keynote speech with Marshall Bell: 'Rutopia'.

2010 Second Australian Conference on Wild Law and Earth Jurisprudence, 'Keeping the Fire', Wollongong University, 24-25 July; Plenary Speech: ''The Law is in the Ground''.

2010 Society for Cultural Anthropology annual conference: 'Natureculture', Santa Fe New Mexico, 7-9 May; Plenary Speech: 'No Name: Not in the Face of All This Death'.

2009 First First Asian Congress on Ethnobiology (in conjunction with the International Society for Ethnobiology), Providence University, Taichung, Taiwan: Keynote Speech: 'Sacred Stories, Sentient Ecologies',

2009 Minding Animals Conference, Newcastle, (NSW, Australia), Speech: 'Philosophical Animism', the Val Plumwood Memorial Lecture,  13-18 July, 2009.

2008 'Rethinking our Place in Nature': The Wednesday Philosophy Lectures, Australian Catholic University, Melbourne, 25 June, Speech: 'Indigenous and Western Understandings of Nature'.

2007 'Singing Up Holism: Linking Natural and Cultural Heritage', Speech presented to the NPWS NSW Regional Advisory Committees' Conference, 27-29 April, Armidale.

2006 'Rethinking the Animal' Forum, Melbourne International Arts Festival, 14 October, Speech: '"Everything finds its own level": kinship with animals in the time of extinction'.

2006 Plenary Speech, My 'place in the sun': Levinas Today, Emmanuel Levinas Centenary Conference, 30 June-1 July, Brisbane, Speech: 'Ruined Faces: the Shattering of Ethics'.

2006 Keynote Speech: Spirits of the Australian Desert, Treacy Centre, Melbourne, Speech: 'Singing Up the Desert'.

2006 Keynote Speech: Environment and Culture Forum: Why Culture Matters for Environmental Sustainability? University of Queensland, Speech: 'Fitting into Country'.

2005 Keynote Speech, NSW & ACT Association of Family History Societies State Conference, 16-18 September, Cowra, Paper: 'The Gurindji Walk-Off'.

2005 Association for the Study of Literature and Ecology Conference: 'Be true to the earth', 31-March - 1 April, Monash University, Plenary Panel with David Abrams and Freya Mathews.

2004 'Resilience and Development', Keynote Speech for the conference: A Regional Affair, 14-15 October, Lakes Entrance, Victoria. Paper: Indigenous Ecology Shaping Relationships.

2004 'What if the Angel of History were a Dog', Keynote speech for the Conference Environments and Ecologies in an Expanded Field, Adelaide, July 3-4.

Symposia, Workshops and Conference Sessions Organised Recently

2010 Convener of masterclass with Professor Marc Bekoff, 3 December, Macquarie University

2010 Convener of plenary panel: 'Animal Calls' for the Association for the Study of Literature, Environment and Culture (ANZ) biennial conference, 'Sounding the Earth', Launceston, 20-22 October.

2010 Convener of the forum: ' Indigenous People and Endangered Species: A forum on cultural survival, national parks, and multispecies conviviality' (Funded by the Academy of Social Science in Australia - International Science Linkages Bilateral Program and with support from CRSI (3 August, Macquarie University)

2010, Co-convener with Kathie Gibson and Ruth Fincher of an ASSA-sponsored Workshop: 'An Ethics for Living in the Anthropocene', Sydney 7-9 February.

2009 Convener of panel: Love, death and pain of the non-human: explorations in the ecological humanities'' for the American Association of Geographers, Annual Conference, Las Vegas, 10-16 April.

2008. Convener, 'Climate Change and the 'Crisis of Reason': A Symposium to Honour the Life and Work of Val Plumwood', 20 June, Fenner School of Environment and Society, ANU.

2006. Convener, 'Job, Earth, Kinship, Justice', Bible and Critical Theory Conference, Melbourne 17-18 June. Paper: 'Job's Grief'.

2004. Convener, 'Desecration', with Peter Read, CRES, ANU, 14 May.

2002. Convener with Rob Heinsohn: 'Marauding Beasts of the Australian Bush', Interspecies Workshop at the Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies, ANU, November 8.

2002. Convener, The Ecological Humanities Working Group, at CRES, November 5.

2001. Convener with Cathy Robinson: 'Speaking of Danger - discourses and debates around endangered species', Interspecies Workshop at the Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies, The Australian National University, October 19.

2001. Convener with Luke Taylor and Graham Ward of the session 'Indigenous People in Country' for the conference on 'The Power of Knowledge, the Resonance of Tradition - Indigenous Studies Conference 2001, sponsored by the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies, 18-20 September.

Professional Memberships

Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia, Fellow

American Anthropological Association, Member

Association for the Study of Literature, Environment and Culture - Australia New Zealand, Vice-President & Member, Advisory Board

Australian Anthropological Society, Fellow

Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies, Member

Ecological Humanities, Founding member

Extinction Studies Working Group, Founding member

Editorial and Advisory Positions

Co-editor with Thom van Dooren of 'Ecological Humanities' in Australian Humanities Review, Australia's oldest and most prestigious on-line Humanities Journal (A rank)

Editorial Board, Australian Humanities Review (A rank)

Editorial Board, Ethics, Place & Environment (USA)(C rank)

Editorial Board, Environment and Planning D: Society and Space (UK) (A rank)

Editorial Board, Taiwan Journal of Indigenous Studies (Taiwan)

Editorial Board, The Bible and Critical Theory (Australia)(B rank)

Advisory Board, Association for the Study of Literature, Environment and Culture - Australia New Zealand

Advisory Board, Minding Animals Conference, 2012

Advisory Board, RMIT Art and Sustainability Research Cluster

Advisory Board, The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology (Australia)(A rank)