AAALS hosts an annual conference where members present their scholarly work on the subject of Australian and New Zealand literature and culture. The conference affords an opportunity for intellectual and social engagement with likeminded individuals from around the globe. In addition to the presentation of scholarly work, the conference features a keynote speaker and a reading by an Australian or New Zealand writer. Some particularly notable Australasian writers who have read at the AAALS conference include Peter Carey, Thomas Keneally, Kate Grenville, David Malouf, Nicholas Jose, Frank Moorhouse, Janette Turner Hospital, Mudrooroo, John Tranter, Lily Brett, John Kinsella, Geoffrey Dutton, Jeanine Leane, Fay Zwicky, Philip Hodgins, Alf Taylor, and Kevin Hart.

The 2020 AAALS conference was scheduled to take place on Wednesday, April 15, through Saturday, April 18, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. However, after much consideration, the AAALS Board finds that to hold this conference is contrary to all expert and governmental advice, as well as dangerous to our members, to the hotel staff, to the people of Albuquerque and New Mexico, and to the communities to which participants would return afterwards. Therefore, the 2020 AAALS conference has been cancelled. The Board has discussed rescheduling, but we believe it is best to wait until there is some kind of “all clear” from the governments, national and state, that makes travel and safety appropriate. If you have already paid registration and membership, the registration portion will be returned to you. If you have not yet paid registration, the AAALS Board urges you to renew your membership or join the organization for the incredibly reasonable amount of $50, which includes your annual subscription to Antipodes. AAALS must do its best to maintain membership numbers despite this crisis.

AAALS invites paper proposals for its sponsored session at the Modern Language Association (MLA) conference to be held in Toronto from 7 to 10 January 2021. The session title is “Resistance and Persistence in (Post)Colonial Australia and Aotearoa/New Zealand.” Contributors to this session are meant to provide rigorous consideration of ongoing and historical colonial contexts of Australia and Aotearoa/New Zealand through literature and film, as well as engage with the tension and possibilities of broadly considered acts of resistance and persistence in often inhumane cultural contexts. The situation of colonized and settled lands engenders acts of resistance and persistence, and reveals the tensions inherent in questions about the right to resist, quiet acts of persistence and loud acts of resistance, the relationship between landscape/environment and resistance, the persistence of historical inequities, individual humanity and collective resistance, and the interplay between resistance and persistence. AAALS welcomes 250-word abstracts for papers that rigorously engage with these questions through art, culture, media, and literature (generously considered). Submit 250-word abstracts by March 29 to

The following is a list of past conference locations, with links to the relevant conference programs:

The Wertheim Prize

The Wertheim Prize is awarded each year at the AAALS conference for the best paper by a graduate student. Al Wertheim was the first AAALS member to bring his graduate students to an AAALS conference. The following is a list of recent winners:

  • 2019 – Hemopereki Hoani Simon, University of Wollongong
  • 2018 – Matilda Grogan, Monash University
  • 2017 – Barbara Hoffmann, University of Miami
  • 2016 – Lydia Saleh Rofail, University of Sydney, and Lydia Marie Heberling, University of Washington
  • 2015 – Belinda Burns, University of Queensland
  • 2014 – Matthew Israel Byrge, Middle Tennessee State University
  • 2013 – Shinjini Chattopadhyay, Jadavpur University
  • 2012 – Marcia van Zeller, Curtin University
  • 2011 – Megan Terry, The University of Texas at Tyler
  • 2010 – Sarah Otto Marxhausen, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Michael R. Griffiths, Rice University
  • 2009 – Esther Prokopienko, College of Saint Rose
  • 2008 – Terra Walston, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • 2007 – Hilary Emmett, Cornell University
  • 2006 – Sean Scarisbrick, University of Buffalo
  • 2005 – Kevin Birmingham, Harvard University, and Nathanael O’Reilly, Western Michigan University
  • 2004 – Per Henningsgaard, Vassar College