Tony Gibbs, FAHA

Emeritus Professor

1963 …2019

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Personal profile

Biography

A.M. Gibbs is Emeritus Professor at Macquarie University Sydney. He was educated at Ballarat Grammar School, Melbourne University (Trinity College) and Oxford University (Magdalen College). At Melbourne University he was awarded the Alexander Sutherland Prize for English Language and Literature Part 2, the Edward Stevens Exhibition, the Professor Morris Prize for Literary Criticism and the Dwight Prize for Final Honours English. At Trinity College he held a major residence scholarship, won the Wigram Allen Essay Prize and was elected Senior Student in 1955. He was awarded the Victorian Rhodes Scholarship for 1956. At Magdalen College he was awarded the Stafford and Knibb Exhibition for postgraduate study. His B.Litt. thesis on the seventeenth century poet Sir William Davenant was subsequently published in expanded form by the Clarendon Press division of OUP. At Melbourne and Oxford he won the high jump at several university and intervarsity athletics events. From 1960 to 1969 he held lectureships in English at the Universities of Adelaide, Leeds and Stirling and tutored for a term at Magdalen College Oxford. From 1969-75 he was Professor of English and Head of Department at the University of Newcastle (NSW). At Macquarie University, he served periods of office as Head of the Department of English and Head of the School of English, Linguistics and Media, and had several terms of appointment to the University Senate. In 1982 he became the first Macquarie academic to be elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, and has served in the Academy as Council Member, Vice-President, Editor and Chair of the English Electoral Section. From the 1970s he was a regular recipient of grants from the Australian Research Council and Macquarie University, and in 1992-93 he served on the ARC’s Social Sciences and Humanities Panel. In 2003 he was awarded a Commonwealth of Australia Centenary Medal for services to Australian Society and the Humanities and was appointed a member of the Founders Council of the International Shaw Society established in that year. He is a member of the Editorial Board of Shaw, the International Journal of Shaw Studies. His research interests are in the fields of Renaissance literature, modern drama, Irish literature, culture and politics, biography and nationalism. He is internationally known as an authority on the life and work of George Bernard Shaw. His principal publications include: Sir William Davenant: The Shorter Poems, and Songs from the Plays and Masques (1972); The Art and Mind of Shaw:  Essays in Criticism (1983); Shaw: Interviews and Recollections (1990); "Heartbreak House": Preludes of Apocalypse (1994); A Bernard Shaw Chronology (2000); and Bernard Shaw: A Life (2005).

Bernard Shaw: A Life (2005) was runner-up for the Robert Rhodes Prize for a book on Literature awarded by the American Conference for Irish Studies; shortlisted for the Nettie Palmer Prize for non-fiction in the Victorian Premier's Literary Awards, and for the General History Prize in the NSW Premier's History Awards; included in the US Choice list of outstanding academic titles of 2006; and highly commended in the 2007 Australian National Biography Award Competition.

Research interests

Professor Gibbs' research ranges from the Renaissance to the twentieth century, with special interests in modern drama, literature and biography, in relation to intellectual, cultural and social history. He is internationally known as an authority on the life and work of George Bernard Shaw. His most recent book, Bernard Shaw: A Life (2005) was runner-up for the Robert Rhodes Prize for a book on Literature awarded by the American Conference for Irish Studies; shortlisted for the Nettie Palmer Prize for non-fiction in the Victorian Premier's Literary Awards, and for the General History Prize in the NSW Premier's History Awards; and included in the US Choice list of outstanding academic titles of 2006; highly commended in 2007 Australian National Biography Award Competition. His previous publications include: Shaw (Writers and Critics Series, 1969); Sir William Davenant: The Shorter Poems, and Songs from the Plays and Masques (1972); The Art and Mind of Shaw: Essays in Criticism (1983); Shaw: Interviews and Recollections (1990); "Heartbreak House": Preludes of Apocalypse (1994) and A Bernard Shaw Chronology (2001).

Education/Academic qualification

BA (Hons), The University of Melbourne

BA (Hons), University of Oxford

MA, University of Oxford

B.Litt, University of Oxford

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