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Contact DetailsBennett_Judy 186


Academic Qualifications

1980: PhD (History) Australian National University

Research Interests

Professor Bennett's research interests are in Pacific History, Environmental History and Australia's and New Zealand's relations with the Pacific Islands.

Judy's most recent books include Oceanian Journeys and Sojourns: Home thoughts Abroad, which she edited in 2015, which considers human mobility and its social meanings in the Pacific.

Judy was the lead investigator of her first Marsden-funded project, entitled "Mothers' darlings of the South Pacific: The children of indigenous women and US servicemen” with Associate Professor Angela Wanhalla in 2010-2012. That book has been published by University of Hawaii Press and the University of Otago Press (2016)
If you are looking for further information on the Mothers' Darlings research project, or you are looking for your American serviceman father or relative, please follow this link:

and see Youtube: Children of Conflict, a documentary shown in Maori TV on Anzac Day 2014 which traces the experiences of some of the children of the wartime Pacific.

Currently leading her second Marsden project (2015-2017: Constant coconuts), the project focuses on the history of the coconut and its related commodities in the tropical Pacific and seeks to discover the meanings and implications attached to these commodities along the chain from producer to consumer.

Research Profile

• Former co-editor and current board member of 'The Journal of Pacific History' (Canberra).
• Editorial Board of 'Pacific Affairs' (Vancouver).
• Assessor of Pacific-related applications for the Australian Research Council.
• Referee for 'Agricultural History' (USA), 'Pacific Studies' (Hawaii), 'Global Environmental Politics' (Sydney).
• Board member of the Pacific History Association.
• Member of the Forest History Society
• Member of the University of Otago's Centre for Research on Colonial Culture.


Bennett, J. A., & Poyer, L. (2023). World War II and the Pacific. In A. P. Hattori & J. Samson (Eds.), The Cambridge history of the Pacific Ocean (Vol. 2): The Pacific Ocean since 1800. (pp. 588-613). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/9781108226875.031 Chapter in Book - Research

Bennett, J. A. (2023). The Pacific world: Doing history from lagoons to the deep. In R. T. Jones & M. K. Matsuda (Eds.), The Cambridge history of the Pacific Ocean (Vol. 1): The Pacific Ocean to 1800. (pp. 107-124). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/9781108539272.008 Chapter in Book - Research

Bennett, J. A. (2022). Growing coconut palms in the Pacific Islands: Colliding knowledge and values. Environment & History, 28(1), 17-52. doi: 10.3197/096734019X15755402985659 Journal - Research Article

Bennett, J. A. (2021). Fluid frontiers and uncertain geographies: US controls on immigration from the Pacific, c. 1880−1950. Journal of Pacific History, 56(3), 236-257. doi: 10.1080/00223344.2017.1406319 Journal - Research Article

Bennett, J. A. (2020). [Review of the book Pursuing respect in the Cannibal Isles: Americans in nineteenth-century Fiji]. Journal of World History, 31(4), 817-820. doi: 10.1353/jwh.2020.0058 Journal - Research Other

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