The University of Sydney CHE node

Members of The University of Sydney node.

    • Karen O'Brien | USyd CHE Node Member

      Karen O'Brien | USyd CHE Node Member


      Karen is interested in how people across the world transcend life’s hardships by appealing to the law for justice. Her research explores socio-legal concerns in a variety of historical, geographical and temporal contexts, particularly during the early modern period. She works on legal sources that are rich in personal narrative and draws on a range of theoretical and methodological approaches to uncover original voices. Her archival research examines manuscripts and legal records from church courts, quarter sessions and assizes, and takes into account such legal sources as testimony and petitions in people’s attempts to achieve justice. It additionally draws on a range of novel theoretical and methodological approaches that aim to create space for an Indigenous voice within the socio-legal area. One of her research strengths lies in the field of Indigenous research that involves primary sources. Her work has made a strong impact in the field of Indigenous politics and rights, creating an environment for further archival research to flourish. Additionally, she researches and regularly publishes about women in early modern history, particularly their emotional investment in relationships. She is currently writing a book for publication with Bloomsbury publishers on First Australian petitioning.