Vice-Chancellor's Fellow: Professor Dennis Altman

Professor Dennis Altman AM is the son of Jewish refugees, and a writer and academic who first came to attention with the publication of his book Homosexual: Oppression & Liberation in 1972.

This book, which has often been compared to Greer’s Female Eunuch and Singer’s Animal Liberation, was the first serious analysis to emerge from the gay liberation movement, and was published in seven countries, with a readership that continues today. [In 2010 it was published in Japan, and in 2012 University of Queensland Press issued a fortieth anniversary edition]

Since then Altman has written fourteen books exploring sexuality, politics and their inter-relationship in Australia, the United States and now globally. These include The Homosexualization of America; AIDS and the New Puritanism; Rehearsals for Change; Gore Vidal’s America and Fifty First State?, as well as  a novel The Comfort of Men and memoirs Defying Gravity. His book, Global Sex (Chicago U.P, 2001), has been translated into five languages, including Spanish, Turkish and Japanese. Altman co-edited Why Human Security Matters (Allen & Unwin) and his book The End of the Homosexual? was published by UQP in 2013. Since then there are two new books: Queer Wars [with Jon Symons] (Polity, 2016); and co-edited with Sean Scalmer, How to Vote Progressive in Australia (Monash University Press, 2016).

Altman is a Professorial Fellow in the Institute for Human Security at La Trobe. He was President of the AIDS Society of Asia and the Pacific (2001-5), and has been a member of the Governing Council of the International AIDS Society and a Board member of Oxfam Australia. In 2005 he was Visiting Professor of Australian Studies at Harvard. He was listed by The Bulletin as one of the 100 most influential Australians ever [July 4 2006], and was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in June 2008.