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Biographical entry Adam, Leonhard (1891 - 1960)

16 December 1891
Berlin, Germany
9 September 1960
Bonn, Germany
Academic, Anthropologist, Curator, Ethnologist and Lawyer


Leonhard Adam fled Nazi Germany in 1938, as was one of the 2,500 Jewish refugees labelled 'enemy aliens' who were sent from England to Australia aboard the Dunera. Adam was released from refugee internment at Tatura to take part in an ethnographic project with Professor Max Crawford at the University of Melbourne and went on to the position of scholar (1943-1947), lecturer (1947-1956) and part-time curator of the ethnographic collection (1958-1960). His dedication to the improvement of the ethnological collection at the University led to its renaming as the Leonhard Adam Ethnological Collection.



c. 1912 - 1916
Education - Bachelor's Degree in Ethnology, Universities of Berlin and Griefswald
c. 1916 - 1920
Education - Degree in Practising Law, Berlin University
1919 - 1938
Career position - Editor of Zeitschrift für Vergleichende Rechtswissenschaft (Journal of Comparative Jurisprudence)
1931 - 1933
Career position - Lecturer in ethnological jurisprudence and primitive law at the Institute of Foreign Laws, Berlin
Life event - Nazi law disallowed him from practising in his field.
c. 1933
Career position - Member of the board of experts of the Ethnographical Museum, Berlin
Life event - Transported to Australia by the British Government as an 'enemy alien' aboard the Dunera
1938 - 1942
Life event - Interned at refugee camp, Tatura, Victoria
Career position - Collaborated with Prof. Max Crawford on Aboriginal uses of stone.
1943 - 1947
Career position - Scholar, University of Melbourne
1947 - 1956
Career position - Lecturer in anthropology, University of Melbourne
Life event - Naturalised as Australian Citizen
Award - Awarded a doctorate from the University of Bonn, Germany
1958 - 1960
Career position - Part-time Curator of the Ethnographic Collection, University of Melbourne

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Rebecca Rigby