Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS)


Lecture: Gondwanaland - the Transnational History of Southern Earth

26 June 2024, 5:30 pm–8:00 pm

Black and white portrait of the speaker on the left and two black and white drawings of Earth on the right when the continents were not yet seperated and then seperated

Join us for this year’s Centre for Transnational and Global History Annual Lecture, delivered by Alison Bashford on the ancient megacontinent Gondwanaland.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to

All | UCL staff | UCL students






Institute of Advanced Studies


IAS Forum
G17, ground floor, South Wing
UCL, Gower St, London

There are few place/times like the ancient megacontinent Gondwanaland, that once connected a planetary south: South Asia, Southern African, South America, Australasia and Antarctica. It can simultaneously enchant a plate tectonics modeller, an Indigenous theologian, a historian of Tamil origin-stories, a Gond artist, and a UNESCO world heritage committee seeking to conserve ancient rainforest remnants.

Alison Bashford is leading a collaborative project that explores the modern history of Gondwanaland, incorporating and layering knowledge of its deep geological histories into imperial, settler-colonial and Indigenous histories of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. In this lecture, she explores how we might consider the history of Gondwanaland as an idiosyncratic transnational history, a history and geography that has been nationalised, colonised, and mythologised since c.1800.

This event is supported by the UCL History Department and UCL Anthropocene.


About the Speaker

Alison Bashford

at University of New South Wales, Sydney

Alison Bashford FBA is Scientia Professor of History at University of New South Wales, Sydney, and Director of the Laureate Centre for History & Population. Previously she was Vere Harmsworth Professor at the University of Cambridge. Her recent books are An Intimate History of Evolution (Allen Lane, 2022), shortlisted for the Cundill History Prize, winner of the Nib Literary Prize, and New Earth Histories: Geo-cosmologies and the Making of the Modern World (Chicago, 2023), edited with Emily Kern and Adam Bobbette. She is currently writing Secrets Disclosed: A History of the Hand (Chicago).

More about Alison Bashford