Professor Robert Aldrich FAHA, FASSA, FRHistS, ChevOPalmesAcad

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Institutional Affiliation: The University of Sydney


Robert Aldrich is Professor Emeritus in the Department of History at the University of Sydney, where he taught as Professor of European History until 2021.  He has written widely on modern colonial history – the French overseas empire, colonial monuments and memory, sexuality and empire, the remaining overseas territories of European states, and monarchy and colonialism.  He has a particular interest in the history of Western Europe and South and Southeast Asia.

Current research projects on modern monarchy:

International connections between European and non-European royal dynasties as seen through travel, education and military training by members of one royal family in another country, gift-giving, letter-writing, honours and decorations, imagery, and influences on court culture.

The material culture of monarchy in former colonies and other states, especially in the Indo-Pacific region – royal palaces, monuments, museum collections – and sites and collections in European countries with traces or objects connected with the royal dynasties of former colonies.

The lives and activities of descendants of deposed monarchs and abolished dynasties, especially in Europe and Asia.

Forthcoming, current or recent research publications on modern monarchy:

Global Royal Families (edited with Cindy McCreery and Falko Schnicke), under contract with Oxford University Press – manuscript to be submitted in 2021.

‘Kingdoms, Empires and the French Republic: Colonisers and Indigenous Monarchs in the Asia Pacific’, History Australia, Vol. 18, No. 2 (2021), pp. 370-389.

Monarchies and Decolonisation in Asia (edited with Cindy McCreery) (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2020), with a co-authored chapter (with Cindy McCreery) on ‘Monarchies, Decolonisation and Post-Colonial Asia’ (with Cindy McCreery), pp. 1-21, and an authored chapter on ‘The Himalayan Kingdoms, British Colonialism, and Indigenous Monarchs after the End of Empire’, pp. 60-79.

‘European Royals and their Colonial Realms: Honors and Decorations’ (with Cindy McCreery), in Christina Jordan and Imke Pollard (eds), Realms of Royalty: New Directions in Researching Contemporary European Monarchies (Transcript: Bielefeld, 2020), pp. 63-88.

Banished Potentates: Dethroning and Exiling Indigenous Monarchs under British and French Colonial Rule, 1815-1955 (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2018).

Royals on Tour: Politics, Pageantry and Colonialism (edited with Cindy McCreery) (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2018), with a co-authored chapter (with Cindy McCreery) on ‘Empire tours: royal travel between colonies and metropoles’, pp. 1-22, and authored chapters on ‘French Imperial Tours: Napoléon III and Eugénie in Algeria and Beyond’, pp. 38-55 , and ‘Colonial Kings in the Republican Metropole: The Visits to France of King Sisowath (1906) and Emperor Khai Dinh (1922)’, pp. 125-145, and.

‘British Royal Tours of the Dominions in the Twentieth Century and Beyond’ (edited with Cindy McCreery), special issue of the Royal Studies Journal, 2018, with authored article on ‘Visiting the Family and Introducing the Royals’.

Crowns and Colonies: European Monarchies and Overseas Empires (with Cindy McCreery) (Manchester, University Press, Manchester, 2016).  Pp. xii + 336, with a co-authored chapter (with Cindy McCreery) on ‘European Sovereigns and Their Empires “Beyond the Seas”’, pp. 1-26, and an authored chapter on ‘The Return of the Throne: The Repatriation of the Kandyan Regalia to Ceylon’, pp. 139-162.

‘Out of Ceylon: The Exile of the Last King of Kandy’, in Ronit Ricci (ed.), Exile in Colonial Asia: Kings, Convicts, Commemoration (University of Hawai’i Press, Honolulu, 2016), pp. 48-70.

‘France and the King of Siam : An Asian King’s Visits to the Republican Capital’, in Julie Kalman (ed.), French History and Culture : Papers from the George Rudé Seminar, Volume 6 (2015) (H-France).

‘Imperial Banishment: French Colonizers and the Exile of Vietnamese Emperors’, in Joseph Zizek and Kirsty Carpenter (eds), French History and Culture: Papers from the George Rudé Seminar (2012), Vol. 5, H-France, 2014, pp. 123-133.



Dr Cindy McCreery
Department of History, A18 Brennan MacCallum Building, University of Sydney