Dr Brett Holman

Lecturer in History - School of Humanities

Phone: +61 2 6773 2292

Email: bholman2@une.edu.au


BSc (Hons) MSc (Physics) GradDipArts PGradArts PhD (History) University of Melbourne


Australian Historical Association

International Association for the History of Transport, Traffic and Mobility

International Society for First World War Studies

Society for the History of Technology

Society for Military History

Teaching Areas

Modern European history

Modern British history

War and society

Research Interests

ORCID 0000-0001-6489-2798

ARC Linkage Project LP160101232 ‘Heritage of the Air: How aviation transformed Australia’ (Partner Investigator)

The theory, anticipation and experience of aerial bombardment in Britain, c.1900 to 1945, particularly in the civilian and public sphere.

Airmindedness and the aeroplane in British and Australian culture.

Panic and fear in the modern era, particularly in Britain but also as a transnational phenomenon.

Mystery aircraft scares in the early twentieth century.

The history and memory of war, in Britain and Australia.



Brett Holman, The Next War in the Air: Britain's Fear of the Bomber, 1908-1941 (Farnham and Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2014).

Book Chapters

Brett Holman, 'The enemy at the gates: the 1918 mystery aeroplane panic in Australia and New Zealand', in Michael J. K. Walsh and Andrekos Varnava, eds, Australia and the Great War: Identity, Memory and Mythology (Carlton: Melbourne University Press, 2016), 71-96.

Articles (refereed)

Brett Holman, ‘Constructing the enemy within: rumours of secret gun platforms and Zeppelin bases in Britain, August-October 1914’, British Journal for Military History 3 (2017), 22-42, http://bjmh.org.uk/index.php/bjmh/article/view/151.

Brett Holman, 'The phantom airship panic of 1913: imagining aerial warfare in Britain before the Great War', Journal of British Studies 55 (2015), 99-119, http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/jbr.2015.173.

Brett Holman, 'Dreaming war: airmindedness and the Australian mystery aeroplane scare of 1918', History Australia 10 (2013), 180-201, http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/14490854.2013.11668467.

Brett Holman, 'The shadow of the airliner: commercial bombers and the rhetorical destruction of Britain, 1917-35', Twentieth Century British History 24 (2013), 495-517, http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/tcbh/hws042.

Brett Holman, '"Bomb back, and bomb hard": debating reprisals during the Blitz', Australian Journal of Politics and History 58 (2012), 394-407, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8497.2012.01643.x.

Brett Holman, 'The air panic of 1935: British press opinion between disarmament and rearmament', Journal of Contemporary History 46 (2011), 288-307, http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0022009410392407.

Brett Holman, 'World police for world peace: British internationalism and the threat of a knock-out blow from the air, 1919-1945', War in History 17 (2010), 313-32, http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0968344510365227.

Articles (non-refereed)

Brett Holman, 'Explainer: the terror behind Keep Calm And Carry On', The Conversation, 12 July 2016, https://theconversation.com/explainer-the-terror-behind-keep-calm-and-carry-on-58651.

Brett Holman, 'Seeing things: mystery aeroplanes caused a scare on the home front in 1918', Wartime 61 (2013), 48-53.

Brett Holman, 'Ploughshares into swords? The forgotten threat of the commercial bomber', Flightpath, May 2011, 56-9.

Brett Holman, 'Looking up at the Luftwaffe', BBC History Magazine, September 2010, 34-6.

Brett Holman, 'Who was Neon?', Dirigible 57 (2009), 16-7.

Book reviews

Brett Holman, review of Dietmar Süss, Death from the Skies: How the British and Germans Survived Bombing in World War II (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014), Britain and the World 8 (2015), 112-5, http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/brw.2015.170b.

Brett Holman, review of Richard Overy, The Bombing War: Europe 1939-1945 (London: Allen Lane, 2013), Wartime 69 (2015).

Brett Holman, review of John Bede Cusack, They Hosed Them Out (Kent Town: Wakefield Press, 2012), Reviews in Australian Studies 8 (2014).

Brett Holman, review of Michael Molkentin, Flying the Southern Cross: Aviators Charles Ulm and Charles Kingsford Smith (Canberra: National Library of Australia, 2012), Reviews in Australian Studies 7 (2013).

Brett Holman, review of Susan R. Grayzel, At Home and Under Fire: Air Raids and Culture in Britain from the Great War to the Blitz (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2012), Journal of Military History 76 (2012), 1267-8.

Brett Holman, review of Gordon Pirie, Air Empire: British Imperial Civil Aviation 1919-1939 (Manchester and New York: Manchester University Press, 2009), Journal of Historical Geography 37 (2011), 252.

Brett Holman, review of Anthony Aldgate and Jeffrey Richards, Britain Can Take It: British Cinema in the Second World War (London and New York: I. B. Tauris, 2007) and S. P. Mackenzie, The Battle of Britain on Screen: 'The Few' in British Film and Television Drama (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2007), Melbourne Historical Journal 36 (2008), 87-90.

Non-historical publications

Brett Holman, 'Goodbye, Zeta Reticuli', Fortean Times 242 (November 2008), 50-2.

M. J. Drinkwater, M. D. Gregg, B. A. Holman and M. J. I. Brown, 'The evolution and star formation of dwarf galaxies in the Fornax Cluster', Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 326 (2001), 1067-94.

Michael J. Drinkwater, Michael D. Gregg and Brett A. Holman, 'The nature of dwarf ellipticals in Virgo and Fornax', in M. Arnaboldi, G. S. Da Costa and P. Saha, eds, The Second Stromlo Symposium: The Nature of Elliptical Galaxies, Proceedings of the Symposium held at the Australian Academy of Science, Canberra, Australia, 26-30 August 1996 (San Francisco: Astronomical Society of the Pacific, 1997), 287-91.

R. L. Webster, P. J. Francis, B. A. Holman, F. J. Masci, M. J. Drinkwater and B.A. Peterson, 'The Parkes Lens Survey', in C. S. Kochanek and J. N. Hewitt (eds), Astrophysical Applications of Gravitational Lensing: Proceedings of the 173rd Symposium of the International Astronomical Union, Held in Melbourne, Australia, 9-14 July, 1995 (Dordrecht: Kluwer, 1996), 393-8.

Michael Drinkwater and Brett Holman, FLAIR Data Reduction with IRAF (Anglo-Australian Observatory, 1996).

Brett Holman, Michael Drinkwater and Michael Gregg, 'A search for M32-Iike galaxies in the Fornax Cluster using FLAIR', in J. M. Chapman, R. D. Cannon, S. J. Harrison and B. Hidayat (eds),The Future Utilisation of Schmidt Telescopes: IAU Colloquium 148, held 7-11 March 1994 in Bandung, Indonesia (San Francisco: Astronomical Society of the Pacific, 1995), 107-10.

Related Links

Research blog, Airminded: http://airminded.org