David Epstein
Tuesday, 23 November 2021

Remembering Professor Stuart Macintyre

We at the Chifley Research Centre are saddened by the death on 22 November 2021 of Laureate Professor Stuart Macintyre, one of Australia’s most distinguished and prolific labour historians. He was 74.

Image: Stuart Macintyre – courtesy of the Wheeler Centre

Stuart Macintyre made many major contributions to Australia labour history, but his work, Australia’s Boldest Experiment: War and Reconstruction in the 1940s, explaining Ben Chifley’s leading role in Australia’s post-WW2 reconstruction and economic development was particularly important. It won the NSW Premier’s Australian History Prize in 2016.

Stuart Macintyre was an extraordinary historian, with an exceptional work ethic, who added greatly to his readers’ knowledge of the Australian and British labour movements and provided the foundation for an informed debate about the so-called ”history wars”.

Generous with his time, civilised in his discourse and rigorous in his scholarship, Stuart Macintyre wrote, or made significant contributions to, over twenty notable books, as well as holding senior academic roles and voluntary offices. A graduate of Melbourne, Monash and Cambridge universities, he was twice Dean of the Faculty of Arts and held the Ernest Scott Chair of History at Melbourne University.

In addition, Macintyre held the Harvard Chair of Australian Studies in 2007-2008, was President of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia and the Australian Society for the Study of Labour History, and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities. On retirement, he was appointed Emeritus Laureate Professor of the University of Melbourne and Professorial Fellow of the School of Historical and Philosophical Studies.

Among the works Stuart Macintyre will be remembered for are his co-editing of The Oxford Companion to Australian History (1998), The Reds: The Communist Party of Australia from origins to illegality (1999), A History for A Nation (1994), The Labor Experiment (1989), and The History Wars (2003). In 2001 he co-edited, with John Faulkner, The True Believers: The Story of The Federal Parliamentary Labor Party, published in celebration of the centenary of the Federal Caucus.

Vale Stuart Macintyre.