Jeannine Baker

Jeannine Baker

PHA NSW Accreditation

Professional Member


Jeannine is a historian who has worked in both the academic and public spheres, with a particular interest in Australian labour history, media history and women's history.

Jeannine is an Honorary Associate in the Department of Media, Music, Communication and Cultural Studies at Macquarie University. She has a PhD in Australian History (Melbourne University, 2013) and an MA in Public History (UTS, 2000). She was awarded the 2014 Dennis-Wettenhall award for the best postgraduate thesis at Melbourne University. Her first book, Australian Women War Reporters: Boer War to Vietnam, was published by NewSouth in 2015.

Jeannine has over fifteen years' experience in the media and museums sector, as a researcher, writer, curator, oral historian and producer. She has produced several radio documentaries for ABC Radio National, the most recent of which is 'Holding a Tiger by the Tail' (2015), about the Darwin newspaper editor and journalist Jessie Litchfield. She also wrote and directed the television documentary Our Drowned Town (SBS, 2001), about the flooding of the NSW town of Adaminaby for the Snowy Mountains Scheme. Other television documentaries and programs Jeannine has been the researcher for include Compass (ABC), Vote Yes for Aborigines (SBS), The Secret History of Eurovision (Electric Pictures), Croker Island Exodus (Tamarind Tree Pictures), Rewind (ABC) and The Colour of War (Film Australia/Nine Network).

Jeannine was employed as an oral history interviewer on the Australian Generations Oral History Project (Monash University),  Forgotten Australians and Former Child Migrants Oral History Project (National Library of Australia), and for the Australian Museum's oral history program. She is also an interviewer for the National Film and Sound Archive oral history program.

Jeannine has worked as co-curator or curator on a number of museum  exhibitions, including Death: the Last Taboo (Australian Museum, 2003), Births of a Nation (Powerhouse Museum, 2001), and Body Art  (Australian Museum, 1999).

She is currently working on a history of women in Australian television and radio broadcasting.


Area of Expertise

Australian media history - particularly women in journalism and broadcasting

Australian social history and labour history

Publications/Past Work


Women War Reporters: Boer War to Vietnam. Sydney: NewSouth Publishing, 2015.

Arrow, M., Baker, J., and Monagle, C. (eds), Small Screens: Essays in Contemporary Australian Television. Melbourne: Monash University Press, September 2016.

Book chapters

‘“Gaps in the national family album”: one-off Australian documentaries on the ABC and SBS’, in Small Screens: Essays on Contemporary Australian Television, edited by Michelle Arrow, Jeannine Baker and Clare Monagle. Melbourne: Monash University Publishing, 2016: 79–95.

‘War Stories: Remembering women conflict reporters’, in Julianne Schultz and Peter Cochrane, eds, Griffith Review 48: Enduring Legacies. Griffith University, 2015.

Journal articles

‘Australian women journalists and the “pretence of equality”’, Labour History, no. 108 (May 2015): 1–16.

‘Lines of demarcation: Australian women war reporters in Europe during World War II’, History Australia 12, no. 1 (April 2015): 187–206.

‘Marginal creatures: Australian women war reporters during World War II’, History Compass 13, no. 2 (February 2015): 40–50.*

‘“All the glamour of the East”: Tilly Shelton-Smith reports from Malaya, 1941’, Australian Historical Studies 41, no. 2 (2010): 198–216.

Radio and TV documentaries

‘Holding a Tiger by the Tail: Jessie Litchfield’. Recorded/rendered creative work, 26 minute commissioned radio feature documentary, Earshot, ABC Radio National, 30 June 2015.

 ‘Fler and the Modernist Impulse’. Recorded/rendered creative work, 55 minute commissioned radio feature documentary, Hindsight, ABC Radio National, 27 February 2011.

‘Parenting Blind’. Recorded/rendered creative work, 30 minute commissioned radio feature documentary. 360documentaries, ABC Radio National, 18 July 2009.

‘West of the Divide’. 30 minute commissioned radio feature documentary. Street Stories, ABC Radio National, 14 December 2005.

‘Neil Bedford’. 30 minute commissioned radio feature documentary. Verbatim, ABC Radio National, 25 May 2005.

‘Waifs and Strays: The children of the Randwick Destitute Children’s Asylum. 55 minute commissioned radio feature documentary. Hindsight, ABC Radio National, 4 April 2004.

Our Drowned Town’. 30 minute commissioned TV documentary feature. SBS TV, 2001. Funded through the ‘Australia By Numbers’ competitive scheme for emerging filmmakers, run by the Australian Film Commission and SBS.

Other work

‘Macready, Agnes, (1855? – 1935), Nurse, Journalist, War Correspondent’. Online Encyclopedia of Australian Women and Leadership, 2014,

 ‘Constance Le Plastrier’. In Richard Aitken, ed., The Oxford Companion to Australian Gardens. Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 2002, 367.

‘Children’s Literature’. In Richard Aitken, ed., The Oxford Companion to Australian Gardens. Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 2002, 138.

'Curating tea stories'. In Public History Review 6 (2000): 24–26.