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Australia Folklore Research Unit

The Australian Folklore Research Unit (AFRU) was established within Australian Studies in the Faculty of Humanities in March 2002. The unit developed from folklore and folklife activities undertaken at Curtin University since the 1980s, including; the development of Australia’s only state folklore collection, the WA Folklore Archive; the teaching of folklore units; the foundation of the journal Australian Folklore in 1987; the establishment of Black Swan Press in 1992 to publish research in folklore and related fields.

Our research expertise includes but is not limited to; Australian folklore, global hero traditions, urban folklore, Australian cultural history, Anglophone cultural traditions, applied folklore.

Selected research publications

Books

Seal , Graham. Great Australian Stories (2nd edn,) Allen & Unwin, Sydney, 2011.

Seal, Graham and Jennifer Gall (eds) Antipodean Traditions: Australian Folklore in the 21st Century. Perth: Black Swan Press, 2011. (No 6 in the Institute’s series ‘Studies in Australia, Asia and the Pacific’.)

Seal, Graham. Outlaw Heroes in Myth and History, Anthem Press, London/New York, 2011.

Seal, Graham. Dog’s Eye and Dead Horse: Australian Rhyming Slang. Sydney: ABC Books/HarperCollins, 2009.

Seal, Graham. Great Australian Stories: Legends, Yarns and Tall Tales. Sydney: Allen and Unwin, 2009.

Seal, Graham. These Few Lines: The Lost Lives of Myra and William Sykes. Sydney: ABC Books, [2006] 2008.

Seal, Graham, and Warren Fahey, eds. Old Bush Songs: The Centenary Edition of Banjo Paterson’s Classic Collection.Sydney: ABC Books, 2005.

Seal, Graham. Inventing Anzac: The Digger and National Mythology. St Lucia: University of Queensland Press, 2004.

Davey, Gwenda, and Graham Seal. A Guide to Australian Folklore: From Ned Kelly to Aeroplane Jelly.Sydney: Simon & Schuster, 2003.

Seal, Graham, and Rob Willis, eds. Verandah Music: Roots of Australian Tradition. Fremantle, WA: Curtin University Books/Fremantle Arts Centre Press, 2003.

Seal, Graham. ‘Tell ’em I Died Game’: The Legend of Ned Kelly,rev. ed. Melbourne: Hyland House, 2002.

Seal, Graham. Ned Kelly in Popular Tradition. 1980. Reprint, Melbourne: Hyland House, 2002.

Seal, Graham. The Cane Toad High: Great Australian Urban Myths, rev. ed. Sydney: HarperCollins, 2001.

Seal, Graham. Encyclopedia of Folk Heroes. Oxford/Santa Barbara CA: ABC-Clio, 2001.

Seal, Graham. The Hidden Culture: Folklore in Australian Society. 1989. Reprint, Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1993. 2nd rev. ed. Perth: Black Swan Press, 1998.

Seal, Graham. The Lingo: Listening to Australian English. Randwick: University of New South Wales Press, 1998.

Seal, Graham. The Bare Fax. 1996. Reprint, Sydney: Angus & Robertson, 1997.

Seal, Graham. The Outlaw Legend: A Cultural Tradition in Britain, America and Australia. Melbourne/Cambridge/New York: Cambridge University Press, 1996.

Seal, Graham. Great Australian Urban Myths. Sydney: Angus & Robertson, 1995.

Seal, Graham, and Gwenda Davey, eds. The Oxford Companion to Australian Folklore. Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1993.

Seal, Graham, ed. Banjo Paterson’s Old Bush Songs. 1983. Reprint, Sydney and London: Angus & Robertson, 1986.

Book chapters
Seal, Graham. “Consuming Outlaws: Tourism, the Common Good and Heritage from Below,” in Heritage from Below, edited by I. Robertson. Ashgate, 2012.

Seal, Graham and Jennifer Gall. “Australian Folklore in the 21st Century.” In Antipodean Traditions: Australian Folklore in the 21st Century edited by Graham Seal and Jennifer Gall, 2-6 Perth: Black Swan Press, 2011. [LINK TO BSP WEBSITE]

Seal, Graham. “‘Roast Pork the Bill Lang’: Rhyming Slang in Australian Folk Speech.” In Antipodean Traditions: Australian Folklore in the 21st Century edited by Graham Seal and Jennifer Gall, 144-158. Perth: Black Swan Press, 2011.

Seal, Graham. “Digger.” In Australian Symbols, edited by Richard White and Melissa Harper. University of NSW Press/National Museum of Australia, 2010.

Seal, Graham. “Anzac: The Sacred in the Secular.” In Sacred Australia: Post-Secular Considerations, edited by Makarand Paranjape. Thornbury, Vic.: Clouds of Magellan, 2009.

Seal, Graham. “Dread, Delusion and Globalisation from Azaria to Schapelle.” In The Chamberlain Case: Nation, Law, Memory, edited by Deborah Staines, Michelle Arrow and Katherine Biber. Australian Scholarly Publishing, 2009.

Seal, Graham. “Foreigners and the Folklore of Work.” In Foreigners: Secret Artefacts of Industrialism, edited by Jennifer Harris. Perth, WA: Black Swan Press, 2009.

Seal, Graham. “Remembering and Forgetting ANZAC Cottage: Interpreting the Community Significance of Australian War Memorials since World War 1.” In People, Place and Power: Global and Regional Perspectives, edited by Dawn Bennett, Jaya Earnest, and Miyumi Tanji. Perth, WA: Black Swan Press, 2009.

Seal, Graham. “West Australian Folklife.” In The Historical Encyclopedia of Western Australia, edited by Jenny Gregory and Jan Gothard. Crawley, WA: UWA Press, 2009.

Seal, Graham. “Poor Ned, You’re Better Off Dead.” In Ned Kelly, edited by L. Innes. [Icons of Western Culture series] Hastings: Helm Information, 2008.

Seal, Graham. “Introducing Outlawed!,” “The Outlaws of the Marsh.” Outlawed!: Rebels, Revolutionaries and Bushrangers. Canberra: National Museum of Australia, 2003.

Seal, Graham. “The Wild Colonial Boy Rides Again and Again: An Australian Legend Abroad.” In Australian Popular Culture, edited by Ian Craven, 161-72. CUP, Cambridge, 1994.

Seal, Graham. “Bushrangers,” “Humour,” “Ned Kelly,” “Occupational Folklore,” “Waltzing Matilda,” “Wartime Folklore.” In The Oxford Companion to Australian Folklore, edited by Graham Seal and Gwenda Davey. Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1993.

Seal, Graham, and Gwenda Davey. “Introduction: What is Folklore?” In The Oxford Companion to Australian Folklore, edited by Graham Seal and Gwenda Davey. Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1993.

Seal, Graham, Feng Wei, and Lin Zesheng. “Chinese Folklore in Australia.” In The Oxford Companion to Australian Folklore, edited by Graham Seal and Gwenda Davey. Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1993.

Seal, Graham, and J.S. Ryan. “Folk Tales.” In The Oxford Companion to Australian Folklore, edited by Graham Seal and Gwenda Davey. Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1993.

Seal, Graham. Introduction to Ten Shanties Sung on the Australian Run, 1879. Collected and transcribed by George H. Haswell, edited by Graham Seal. Perth: Antipodes Press, 1992.

Refereed journal articles
Seal, Graham. “Barley, barleys and BAR-lees: truce terms among children and adults.” Play and Folklore, 57,  (April) 2012.

Seal, Graham. “‘… and in the morning …’: Adapting and Adopting the Dawn Service.” Journal of Australian Studies, 2011.

Seal, Graham. “A Waltz with Thomas Wood: Constructing an Australian Life.”  Australian Studies 1, no 2 (2010).

Seal, Graham. “Folklore, History and Myth at an Anzac Memorial.” Australian Folklore 25, (November 2010).

Seal, Graham. “The Robin Hood Principle: History, Myth and the Social Bandit.” Journal of Folklore Research 46, no. 1 (2009): 67-89.

Seal, Graham. “Australian Submarines at Peace: The J-Boats.” Journal of Australian Naval History 6, no. 2 (2009).

Seal, Graham. “ANZAC: The Sacred in the Secular.” Journal of Australian Studies, no. 91 (2007): 135-44.

Seal, Graham. “Stories in the Heart: Challenges for the Study of Australian Folk Narrative.” Australian Folklore 22 (November 2007).

Seal, Graham. “The Echo of an Anzac’s Cooee: The Creation, Dissemination and Impact of Digger Culture.” Australian Studies (UK) 20, no. 1-2 (2007).

Seal, Graham. “Chook Raffles, Saints’ Days and Cracker Nights: Australian Folk Customs.” Australian Folklore, no. 20 (2005).

Seal, Graham. “A. L. Lloyd in Australia: Some Conclusions.” Folk Music Journal [English Folk Dance & Song Society] 9, no. 1 (2006): 56-71.

Seal, Graham. “Indigenous Australian Life Histories: A New Genre of ‘Writing’ and a New Paradigm of Publishing?” International Journal of the Book (2006).

Seal, Graham. Review of Hearing the Call: Music and Social History on Lord Howe Island, by P. Hayward, Lord Howe Island Arts Council, 2003. Folk Music Journal [English Folk Dance & Song Society] 9, no. 1 (2006): 106-10.

Seal, Graham. “Anzac Day: An Australian Folk Custom.” Journal of Indian Folkloristics (2003-2004).

Seal, Graham. “Anzac Day: A Customary Complex.” Australian Folklore 18 (November 2003).

Seal, Graham. “Applying Folklore: Now and in the Future.” Lore and Language, no. 15 (2002).

Seal, Graham. “Unravelling Digger Yarn/Spinning in World War One.” Journal of Australian Studies 53 (1997): 146-56.

Seal, Graham. “The Outlaw Hero.” Australian Humanities Review, no. 2 (July 1996).

Seal, Graham. “Ned Kelly: Past, Present and Future.” Australian Folklore, no.10 (1995).

Seal, Graham. “Deep Continuities and Discontinuities in the Outlaw Hero Traditions of Britain, Australia and America.” Lore and Language (1993).

Seal, Graham. “The Wild Colonial Boy Rides Again: An Australian Legend Abroad.” Australian Studies [British Australian Studies Association] (1993).

Seal, Graham. “Two Traditions: The Folklore of the Digger and the Myth of Anzac.” Australian Folklore, no. 5 (1991).

Seal, Graham. Review of Rebecca’s Children: A Study of Rural Society, Crime and Protest, byDavid J.V. Jones. Journal of Peasant Studies (1991).

Seal, Graham. “Written in the Trenches: Trench Newspapers of the Great War.” Journal of the Australian War Memorial (April 1990).

Seal, Graham. “Tradition and Agrarian Protest in Nineteenth Century England and Wales.” Folklore (UK) 99, no. 2 (1988): 146-69.

Seal, Graham. “Azaria Chamberlain and the Media Charivari.”Australian Folklore, no.1 (March 1987).

Seal, Graham. “A ‘Hussitting’ in Berkshire, 1930.” Folklore (UK) 98, no. 1 (1987): 91-94.

Major journal articles 
Seal, Graham.  “Folk Literature of Australia.” Assamese Encyclopedia [World Literature and Folk Literature Volume] 2003.

Seal, Graham. Review of Pelicans & Chihuahuas and Other Urban Legends: Bill Scott Talking About Folklore, by Bill Scott; The Banshee and the Bullocky: Tales of My Uncle Arch by Bill Scott; and The Australian Yarn: The Definitive Collection, by Ron Edwards. Journal of Australian Studies 20, no. 49 (1996): 110-11.

Seal, Graham. “Septic Tanks Down Under: America and Americans in Australian Folklore.” Overland, no.112 (1988).