In this issue

For many years the Australian War Memorial has been encouraging and promoting the study of Australian military history by running conferences and seminars, and by publishing a journal. This issue of the Journal of the Australian War Memorial brings these two long-term activities together.

In July 2005 the Memorial joined with the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the Australian Defence Force Academy in a day-long conference entitled “ANZAC Day to VP Day: arguments and interpretations”. Issue 40 of the Journal offers a selection of papers from that day.

The themes of the conference covered operational military history, memory of war, and prisoners of war. This reflects a tradition at Memorial conferences of bringing operational military historians into the same forum as those interested in the social and cultural aspects of war. Organisers and attendees of this conference were impressed and inspired by the blending of the two themes in both the formal papers and the emerging discussion. For this day at least, representatives of the “two worlds” of military historical research identified by Joan Beaumont in her keynote address came together.

Also included in this issue are two articles – by Michael Molkentin and Ann Elias – which, although unrelated to the conference, do reflect the diversity of subject and interpretation which the Journal would like to attract. Located as it is within a major museum, the Journal also encourages submissions from authors making use of the material culture of war in innovative ways. More information can be found in the Journal’s editorial guidelines.

We hope you enjoy this new issue of the Journal.


Anne-Marie Condé
Editor, Journal of the Australian War Memorial