Dr Robert James Smith DipTeach(SecEngHist)(NRCAE), BA, MLitt, MA(Hons), GradDipHum, PhD (UNE), MACE My research is focussed on cultural tradition and with an Australian or regional focus. Its approaches come from the fields of language, literature and history. Its foundations were in nearly 20 years' experience of teaching school students. Output has ranged from full-length local histories (Byron Bay and Lismore), to extensive editing (Australian Folklore), to regular conference presentations. Specific topics currently range from roadside memorials, and the Australian meat pie, to regional archival film. I was Scholar-in-Residence at the National Film and Sound Archive in 2011. For supervision of higher degrees, I look specifically to cultural tradition or to children's literature, but do consider a wide range of topics from Education and elsewhere—where a language or historical approach may be useful.
Food for thought: the hunger for satisfaction in a world of increasing choice, Australian Folklore (2012)
Creative writing (classes) as a means of revealing unconscious belief systems: the folk culture so often disclosed when one is writing viewpoints (with J S. Ryan), Australian Folklore (2011)
This paper treats of a milestone book that is a already sensational text in many...
Hobbit tales today: stories of small people from Flores, Indonesia (with Concilianus Laos Mbato), Australian Folklore (2011)
There are many stories of little people worldwide. Recent archaeological discoveries in Flores have been...
Sydney and the appearance of the Middle Eastern, Australian Folklore (2010)
This work addresses the phrase of Middle Eastern appearance, and the related concept of ‘the...
Heritage: in whose hands? a regional university's link to its community's traditional culture, Australian Folklore (2009)
As a regional university, the multi-campused Southern Cross University1 has as a key part of...
Australian Folklore: an issue presented to the distinguished Australian folklorists, Hugh Anderson and his wife, Dawn, in his eightieth year (with John S. Ryan), School of Education (2007)
Australian Folklore: a twenty first and anniversary issue containing various international/comparative essays and featuring Australia's heritage and evolving foodways (with John S. Ryan), School of Education (2006)
Lismore: from Lios Mor to Tuckurimba (with Maurice Ryan), School of Education (2006)
Australian Folklore: an issue treating particularly issues of custom, heritage and identity for today's Australians (with John S. Ryan), School of Education (2005)
Australian Folklore: an issue particularly concerned to explore the new writing and publishing, ways of transmitting (personal) story and memory, and to report mid-twentieth Century Australian folk singing and dancing (with John S. Ryan), School of Education (2004)
The dog’s eye: the pie in Australian tradition, Antipodean traditions: Australian folklore in the 21st century (2011)
Foreword, Eucalyptus cutting and distilling in the Tumut district (2010)
Land of the mountain and the flood: North Coast NSW floods to 1974, Flood: essays across the current (2004)
Floods are agents of both physical and psychological change. Their power to affect cultures and...
The rise of art in the Tenterfield community (with C Humphreys), Writing Tenterfield: a collection of historical, cultural and other essays (2002)
That umbrageous foliage: a study of the prose of the North Coast of NSW to 1914, PhD thesis, University of New England, Armidale, NSW (1999) (1999)
A survey of significant regional prose for the North Coast of New South Wales, Australia,...
Contemporary mourning practices: sudden death in the modern world, Death Down Under Conference (2012)
New eyes on old forests: a reconsideration of early accounts of the north coast of New South Wales, Australia's ever-changing forests VI: Proceedings of the eighth National Conference on Australian Forest History (2012)
Early descriptions of forests have long been used as sources for factual evidence of past...
The ‘Highway Pie’ at a crossroads: a new juncture for Australian cultural tradition, Folklore Studies Association of Canada Conference (2012)
An end to roadside memorials? some factors in the decline of this persistent mourning practice, Death Down Under Conference (2011)
Local histories as storytelling: the genre and its community, Storytelling in literature, language and culture: 36th Congress of AULLA (2011)
Most written histories can be seen as a version of storytelling, yet such a view...
Editorials, book reviews, columns, interviews
Review of "Tolkien’s view: windows into his world", Seven: An Anglo-American Literary Review (2011)
Review of Halpert, H: Folk tales, tall tales, trickster tales and legends of the supernatural from the pinelands of New Jersey, Australian Folklore (2011)
Book review: Clarkson, Janet, Pie: a global history, the edible series, Australian Folklore (2009)
Review of Stubbs, Brett, the gold digger's arms, Richmond River Historical Society Bulletin (2009)
Reports, presentations, unpublished papers
National Film and Sound Archive and local history, Museums Australia Group (2011)
National Film and Sound Archive and local history, Richmond River Historical Society (2011)
Folklore and family history, Casino Family History Group (2010)
Folklore studies - what are they, and what do they have to do with North Coast NSW or with schooling?, Research Seminar for School of Education (2010)