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Lasting the Distance
With Alison Wishart
Stories of long-distance relationships permeate our popular literature, films and music. After World War II, travelling for love became an international phenomenon, when an estimated 15,000 Australian war brides crossed the seas to join the men they had met during the war. Using examples from library collections and private archives, this talk will demonstrate how the tangible evidence of long distance love has changed over the past 130 years from handwritten letters and carte-de-visite portraits to the email, SMS and video-calls of the digital era. This has a profound effect on the nature and style of communication and manuscript collecting. While internet-based communication is popular, cheap and more immediate, it is not necessarily more intimate nor satisfying.