Dening, Greg 1931–

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Dening, Greg 1931–


Born 1931, in Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia; son of Alex S. and Irene Dening; married Donna Jeane Merwick (a university lecturer), May 17, 1972. Ethnicity: "Australian." Education: University of Melbourne, B.A. (with honors), 1958, M.A., 1960; Harvard University, M.A., Ph.D., 1968.


Home—Kew, Victoria, Australia. Office—Centre for Cross-cultural Research, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia.


La Trobe University, Bundoora, Australia, senior lecturer in sociology and history, 1969-71; University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria, Australia, Max Crawford Professor of History, beginning 1972, then professor emeritus. Australian National University, adjunct professor at Centre for Cross-Cultural Research. Former priest of Society of Jesus (Jesuits).


(Editor) The Marquesan Journal of Edward Robarts, 1797-1824, University Press of Hawaii (Honolulu, HI), 1974.

Xavier: A Centenary Portrait, Old Xaverians' Association (Kew, Victoria, Australia), 1978.

Islands and Beaches: Discourse on a Silent Land—The Marquesas, 1774-1880, University Press of Hawaii (Honolulu, HI), 1981.

History's Anthropology: The Death of William Gooch, University Press of America (Lanham, MD), 1988, revised edition published as The Death of William Gooch: A History's Anthropology, University of Hawaii Press (Honolulu, HI), 1995.

Mr. Bligh's Bad Language: Passion, Power, and Theatre on the Bounty, Cambridge University Press (New York, NY), 1992.

Performances (essays), University of Chicago Press (Chicago, IL), 1996.

Readings/Writings (essays), Melbourne University Press, 1998.

Beach Crossings: Voyaging across Times, Cultures, and Self, University of Pennsylvania Press (Philadelphia, PA), 2004.

Church Alive! Pilgrimages in Faith, 1956-2006, University of New South Wales Press (Sydney, New South Wales, Australia), 2006.


Greg Dening once commented: "My interests are in the dramatic plays and symbolic gestures with which we construct cultures and the boundaries between cultures. I like to do the anthropology and history of native Pacific islanders and intruding Europeans alike."



American Historical Review, February, 1992, Patricia Nelson Limerick, review of History's Anthropology: The Death of William Gooch, p. 121.

Australian Book Review, April, 1999, Peter Craven, "Seductive History," pp. 5-6.

Journal of American History, June, 1991, David Goodman, review of History's Anthropology, p. 309; December, 1997, Craig Calhoun, review of Performances, p. 1096.

Kirkus Reviews, July 15, 1992, review of Mr. Bligh's Bad Language: Passion, Power, and Theatre on the Bounty.

Library Journal, October 1, 1992, Harold N. Boyer, review of Mr. Bligh's Bad Language, p. 96.