- THE DOROTHY HEWETT AWARD
War Time on Wadjemup: A Social History of the Rottnest Island Internment Camp
By Alexandra Ludewig
The internment camp on Rottnest Island, established for enemy aliens from Germany and Austria-Hungary during World War I, can be considered a historical oddity, not least because Indigenous prisoners were also held captive there by Australian soldiers and warders. The coexistence of men from the most diverse backgrounds and social circumstances, some of whom did not even share a common language, yet still cohabited peacefully, serves on reflection as an inspiration. Thanks to a multitude of photographs, we can still gain a very good insight into this period in Australia, when rare scenes of fraternisation transcended contentious national and ethnic boundaries during the Great War.