Black and white image of Macquarie Island, a subantarctic island located in the Southern Ocean, approximately half way between Australia and Antarctica, and is a Tasmanian State Reserve managed by the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service. It was added to the World Heritage List in 1997 for being an island of unique natural diversity, a site of major geoconservation significance and one of the truly remarkable places on earth. Australia operates a research station at the northern end of the island from which a wide range of research is carried out.

Description of Content

Black and white image showing barren hill in background, ocean washing over rocks along shore in middle and foreground, low vegetation in bottom left corner.

Physical Description

Black and white image.


The Hope (Macpherson) Black Collection is a significant addition to Museum Victoria's working lives collection, it reveals the journey of a woman from depression era Melbourne and illustrates the power of education. It also reveals the often discriminatory policies in place in Victoria before the equal opportunity developments of the late 20th century. In balance though it also exposes the somewhat free expression possible for empowered women in this period. Hope Macpherson clearly states that in her day to day work she never felt discrimination and believes she was given great opportunity to pursue her career and aspirations. However, on analysis her role was often shaped by her gender and its perceived strengths and weaknesses; she was dissuaded from applying to become a taxidermist as it was 'an unsuitable job for a woman', although part of the first group of female scientists allowed to travel to Macquarie Island they were not permitted to camp on land with the male crew for fear of inciting passions. And finally after a distinguished career she was forced to resign her tenure as Australia's first female Curator when she married late in life, as a consequence of the Marriage bar.

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