Staff Directory

Professor Margot Hillel Name: Professor Margot Hillel
Chair of Academic Board
+613 9953 3238
+613 9419 8188
Organisational Area
Office of the Vice-Chancellor and President
Office of the Vice-Chancellor and President
Building 460 - 250 Victoria Parade (250 Victoria Parade, East Melbourne VIC 3002)-Level 5-Room 460.5.43A
Biographical Information









Medal of the Order of Australia, 2000.


Current Position


Chair, Academic Board, Australian Catholic University


Selected publications


Hillel, M. (2013)"Iconic Australia in Alison Lester's "Are we there yet?" in Ase Marie Ommundsen (ed)Looking Out and Looking In - National Identity in Picturebooks of the new Millennium Oslo, Novus Press


Hillel, M. (2012) 'She Faded and Drooped as a Flower": Constructing the Child in Child-Rescue Literature of Late Victorian England' in Adrienne Gavin (ed) The Child in British Literature: Literary Constructions of Childhood, Medieval to Contemporary Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan


Hillel, M. (2012)"Help make the world a better place to live in": Young people as redemptive conscience in Australian books for young adult.s' History of Education & Children's Literature VII/2 pp. 113-126.


Hillel, M. (2011) 'Give us all missionary eyes and missionary hearts': Triumphalism and missionising in late-Victorian children's literature' Mousaion: library science contributions 29/3 pp.179-192.


Hillel, M. (2011) ''She makes them tingle all over': eroticising the child in twentieth-century Australian picture books' History of Education & Children's Literature vi/1 2011 pp. 199-214


Hillel, M. (2010) 'Welcoming strangers: The politics of 'othering' in three Australian picture books' in The Sands of Time: Children's Literature: Culture, Politics & Identity Plaistow and Hillel (eds) Hertford: University of Hertfordshire.


Swain, S and Hillel, M. (2010) Child, Nation, Race and Empire: Child Rescue Discourse, England, Canada and Australia, 1850-1915. Manchester, Manchester University Press.


Swain, S, Hillel, M. and Sweeney, B.(2009) '"Being thankful for their birth in a Christian land": interrogating intersections between whiteness and chid rescue' in Boucher, Carey, Ellinghaus (edsRe-Orienting Whiteness New York, Palgrave Macmillan.


Hillel, M (2009) 'Orphans at the Beach: revisiting Michael Noonan's The December Boys'. Foreign Literature Studies/ Wai Guo Wen Xue Yan Jiu 31/3  pp. 140-147.


Hillel, M and Van der Walt, T. (2009) 'Where is the mother in all this? Representations of mothers and mothering in popular Australian and South African books for young adults' Mousaion: library science contributions 27/2 pp. 227-244


Hillel, M. (2007) `The Shaping of Childhood through the Victorian Government Readers' Journal of Chongqing Social Sciences 2 (Serial No. 147).


Hillel, M. (2007) “Helpless and a cripple”: the disabled child in children’s literature and child rescue discourses in R. Findlay and S. Salbayre (eds) Stories for Children: Histories of Childhood Tours, France: Presses Universitaires Francois Rabelais


Hillel, M. (2007) `Rosemary Hayes and Mixing It' Reading Time Vol. 51, No. 2.


Swain, S., Hillel, M, and Sweeney, B. (2007) 'As though his face had been white': Child Rescuers, Whiteness and the Empire in Historicising Whiteness: Transnational Perspectives on the Construction of an Identity edited by Leigh Boucher, Jane Carey and Katherine Ellinghaus Melbourne; RMIT Publishing in association with the School of Historical Studies, University of Melbourne.


Entries in Zipes, J. ed. (2006) Oxford Encyclopaedia of Children's Literature New York: Oxford University Press.


Hillel, M. (2006) `Picturing Parenting in the Works of Bob Graham' CreaArta Vol. 6 December 2006 .


Hillel, M., C. Carpenter and T. van der Walt (2005) 'The Same But Different: the Local/Global Dynamic in Australian, Canadian and South African Children's Literature' in K. Reynolds, E. O'Sullivan and R. Romoren (eds) Children's Literature Global and Local: Social and Aesthetic Perspectives Kristiansand, Norway: Novus

Swain, S, Warne, E and Hillel, M (2004) 'Ignorance is not innocence: Sex Education in Australia 1890-1939’ in Nelson, C. (ed) Sexual Pedagogies N. Y.: Palgrave.

Hillel, M. (2004) ' Performing Politics: Children as Conscience' in K. Mallan and S. Pearce (eds) Seriously Playful: Genre, Performance and Text Flaxton, Qld.: Post Pressed

Hillel, M. (2004) 'Race and Redemption: Images of Empire in Children's Literature' in K. Darian-Smith, P. Grimshaw and S.Mclntyre (eds) Exploring the British World Melbourne: RMIT Publishing

Hillel, M. (2004) 'Voyeurism and Power: Change and Renewal in the Eroticised Figure in Australian Books for Teenagers' in T.van der Walt (ed) Change and Renewal in Children's Literature Westport, Conn.: Praeger



Recent conference presentations



Children's Literature and Imaginative Geography, University of Ottawa, Ottawa Canada.


European Social Sciences and History Conference,  University of Glasgow, Glasgow Scotland.



International Conference on Twentieth-Centuryy Literature in English from a Cross-Cultural Perspective Held by Foreign Literature Studeis, Central China University and School of Foreign Languages,.Harbin Institute of Technology. Harbin, China



European Social Sciences and History Conference, Ghent, Belgium


International Research Society for Children's Literature, Frankfurt, Germany


Society for the History of Childhood nd Youth, University of California, Berkeley



International Conference on Sea Literature Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literature, University of Ningbo, China. 


Sands of Time: Children's Literature, Culture, Politics and Identity, University of Hertfordshire, England.


European Social Sciences and History Conference, Faculty of Letters University of Lisbon, Portugal.


ARC Research Grant


DP0663985 Australian Research Council Discovery Grant entitled Child, Nation, Race and Empire: a Critical Analysis of Child Rescue Narratives in Britain, Australia and Canada 1850-1915 (2005) an interdisciplinary grant held  jointly with Professor Shurlee Swain. (competed)





Thomas, Roie.  'Explotation to Autonomy in representations of the Botswana San'. Co-supervisor.


Almond, Ros. 'Good girls, tough guys, prigs and pornographers: a literary analysis'. C0-supervisor.


Clutterbok, Trudy '"I've sworn to kill them all": Violence, Home and Homeland in Australian children's literature, 1900-1970.' Principal Supervisor




Carr, Emily.  Understanding the Sublime in literature. Principal supervisor.




Dowling, Sarah '"The Imagining of the Invisible": Narrative, pilgrimage and "The Metaphysics of the Quotidian" in Charles Wright's poetry'. Co-supervisor.



Lennard, Anthony, `Harry Potter and the Quest for Values; How the Boy Wizard can be used to teach personal values', Principal supervisor

Carroll, Maureen, `Imagination for Better Not Worse: The Hobbit in the Primary Classroom', Principal supervisor


Research Masters

       Scott, Pam. “The Gift Impossible”: Representations of child removal in Australian children’s literature, 1941-1941.M.           Phil. Principal supervisor.

  Nolan, Grace. ‘The Stories my mother told me: A comparative study of the folktales of Palmi in the context of the European oral tradition. M. Phil. Principal supervisor.

 Deacey, Cathy. ‘Motherhood statements: mothers and their adolescent daughters.’ M.Soc.Sci. co-supervisor.

               Nolan, John, "`A Call Above Duty": Missionaries in Children's Literature', MPhil. Principal supervisor.

  MEd Theses

Maher, Sue, `Pain and Reality: Death and Grieving in Children's Literature'

 Browne, Deborah, "`Not Alone Any Longer": A Study of Social Issues in Contemporary Australian Children's Literature'

Bachelor of Arts (Honours)

Carr, Emily. '"You've got the power": An Analysis of the evil trickster within contemporary literature for young adults'.

White, Stephen, `DiscWorld's Death: A Reflection of Cultural Attitudes to Life',

Solomon, Emma, "'Am I going to get used to choofing?" An Exploration of the Portrayal of Drugs in Three Australian Young Adult Novels'

Haddrick, Marian, `Successful Women have to be Men: an Exploration of Gender Construction within Three of Hannie Rayson's plays'

Professional Memberships

Professional & community involvements


Director, Board Children's Book Council of Austalia


Member, Senate, Australian Catholic University


External Representative Academic Board, Catholic Theological College


Member, Australasian Children’s Literature Association for Research.

.Member International Research Society for Children’s Literature.

Judge, ACU Literature Prize 2013-2015

Judge, Eve Pownall Award for Information Books 2007-8

Judge, Crichton Award for New Illustrators 2012-13

Judge, Blake Prize for Religious Art 2004


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