Last week the University community observed one minute of silence at 11am for Remembrance Day. The Library took inspiration from its current exhibition, ‘The Perfect Migrant’ to expand its commemoration to include those who illustrate the complexity of war.

The exhibition features Paul Glass and Ludwig Hirschfeld-Mack who fought for Germany and Austria in WWI – Hirschfeld-Mack even won an Iron Cross for his dedication. Yet past loyalties couldn’t save them from Hitler and the evils of Nazism. Nor did fleeing persecution in Germany protect Erwin Fabian, who ended up serving in the Australian Army to escape internment as an enemy alien.

Wartime themes of forced migration, displacement, and refugees are also explored in the online exhibition Internment & Beyond: Stories from the Dunera & Queen Mary. This permanent digital exhibition was created following the overwhelming interest in The Perfect Migrant exhibition, and the publication of Dunera Lives by Dr Seumus Spark, Ken Inglis, Jay Winter, and Carol Bunyan.

The online exhibition features artwork from men such as Erwin Fabian, Kurt Winkler, Klaus Friedeberger and others who were interned in Australian camps during WWII. Juxtaposed alongside these are the works of contemporary refugees Johny Salameh, Farhad Bandesh, and Asal Rajabi. The thematic similarities between the two groups remind us that the effects of war are the same today, as they were 100 years ago.

With the campus now open, students and staff can visit the exhibition in The Gallery of the Sir Louis Matheson Library during opening hours. Join us as we remember all those who suffered and died in war, as well as those who fight to maintain their freedoms during peace, no matter their place of origin.