Jenny Hocking

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Jenny Hocking FASSA (born 1954) is an Australian academic, author and biographer. She is Research Professor and Australian Research Council Discovery Outstanding Research Award (DORA) Fellow with the National Centre for Australian Studies at Monash University. In 2013 she was appointed the inaugural Distinguished Whitlam Fellow at the Whitlam Institute, University of Western Sydney.[1] She was elected a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia in 2010.[2] She is currently taking the National Archives of Australia to court to release the "palace letters" relating to the dismissal of the Whitlam government. She has established a chuffed account to fund this case.


Hocking is a biographer, scriptwriter and scholar in Australian Studies, counter-terrorism and Australian politics.[3] She is the author and co-editor of several books including two books on terrorism, Beyond Terrorism: the Development of the Australian Security State, first published in 1993,[4][5] and Terror Laws: ASIO, Counter-Terrorism and the Threat to Democracy and has presented written and in-person submissions to parliamentary inquiries into Australia's counter-terrorism developments.[6] She has written on these and other topics in several press Opinion pieces.[7][8][9] She is also a scriptwriter and co-scripted Mr Neal Is Entitled to Be An Agitator,[10] a documentary about former Attorney-General in the Whitlam Government and High Court judge Lionel Murphy, which won the Australian Human Rights Award for Best Documentary Film in 1991,[11] and has been historical consultant on several television documentaries including the 2-part series on Prime Minister Gough Whitlam, The Power and the Passion (2013), screened on ABC-TV.[12]

Hocking is the author of three biographies: on Lionel Murphy, Lionel Murphy: A Political Biography; on Frank Hardy, Australian author and communist activist, Frank Hardy: Politics Literature Life; and a two-volume biography of former Labor Prime Minister Gough Whitlam, Gough Whitlam: A Moment in History and Gough Whitlam: His Time. The first volume was launched by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in November 2008. It has been reviewed widely in Australia.[13][14][15][16][17][18] Hocking is a regular guest of Writers Festivals, including the Melbourne and Sydney Writers Festivals.


Lionel Murphy: A Political Biography[19] was short-listed for the 1998 South Australian Festival Awards for Literature non-fiction award.[20] Frank Hardy: Politics, Literature, Life[21] was short-listed for the NSW Premier's History Awards, State Records Prize in 2006;[20] Gough Whitlam: A Moment in History[22] was short-listed in 2009 for the The Age Book of the Year Award, the Queensland Premier's History Awards and the Prime Minister's Literary Awards, and long-listed in the Walkley Awards.[20] In 2012 Gough Whitlam: His Time[23] was shortlisted in the Prime Minister's Literary Awards (Australian History prize), the Queensland Literary Awards (non-fiction award) and the National Biography Award, and long-listed in the Waverley NiB Awards for Literature.[20]

Palace letters[edit]

She is currently taking legal action to have the letters between Sir John Kerr and the Queen during the 1975 Australian constitutional crisis released by the National Archives of Australia.[24]



  • Hocking, Jenny (2008). Gough Whitlam : a moment in history. Carlton, Vic.: Melbourne University Publishing. 
  • — (2012). Gough Whitlam : his time. Carlton, Vic.: Miegunyah Press. 

Essays and reporting[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ Entry on Jenny Hocking, Who's Who in Australia 2014
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ Who's Who in Australia 2014
  7. ^
  8. ^ ‘Story of a High Court judge is a modern tragedy’ Sydney Morning Herald, Opinion Page, 31 August 2000
  9. ^ 'A Cloud Over Journalistic Standards' The Sydney Morning Herald, Opinion Page, 26 January 1999
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^ "Whitlam: The Power and the Passion. The Making of the Documentary" (PDF). ABC-TV. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  13. ^ The real Whitlam. It's time we discovered the man behind the political legend, writes Nathan Hollier. The Age 10/01/2009
  14. ^ Sydney Morning Herald Ross Fitzgerald ‘The great, great man’ 13 December 2008
  15. ^ Canberra Times, John Warhurst, ‘Canberra and the making of a problematic PM’ 22 November 2008
  16. ^ Illawarra Mercury 15 November 2008
  17. ^ Adelaide Advertiser, Greg Kelton, ‘This week's selections’ 15 November 2008
  18. ^ Weekend Australian Evan Williams ‘The definitive Gough botherer’ 15 November 2008 and by both Carmen Lawrence and Mungo McCallum in Overland (magazine) 2009
  19. ^ Hocking, Jenny (1997). Lionel Murphy: A Political Biography. Cambridge University Press. p. 371. ISBN 0-5215-8108-7. 
  20. ^ a b c d "Research: Professor Jenny Hocking". Monash. Retrieved August 1, 2017. 
  21. ^ Hocking, Jenny (2005). Frank Hardy: Politics, Literature, Life. South Melbourne: Lothian Books. ISBN 0-7344-0836-6. 
  22. ^ Hocking, Jenny (2009). Gough Whitlam: A Moment In History. Melbourne University Publishing, The Miegunyah Press. p. 496. ISBN 9780522857054. 
  23. ^ Hocking, Jenny (2014). Gough Whitlam: His Time. Melbourne University Publishing, The Miegunyah Press. p. 632. ISBN 9780522868067. 
  24. ^

External links[edit]