Do you consider yourself something of a heavy metal aficionado? Then maybe you might want to enrol at the University of Newcastle for their newly-announced Geography of Heavy Metal course.

If there’s one thing that we’ve discovered over the last year, it’s that Australian researchers like focusing on heavy metal.

We’re not joking when we say that either, with Sydney’s Macquarie University focusing on death metal on two seperate occasions, once to explain the appeal, and once to announce that fans of the genre are in fact “nice people”.

However, if you’ve ever wondered how you get a job like this, well, you might want to head along to the University of Newcastle.

According to Anarchist Geography – a site run by the University of Newcastle’s Director of Human Geography, Simon Springer – there are currently two fully-funded PhD scholarships up for grabs, available to those who wish to study the Geographies of Homelessness, Veganism, Unschooling, or Heavy Metal Music.

Offering up an annual living rate of $27,596, applicants to the PhD course must have a minimum education level featuring BA Honours, and ideally a Master’s degree in Geography or a related field.

“Heavy Metal is a global phenomenon, representing a major cultural trend for the past four decades,” the description reads. “Numerous subgenres exist within the general framework of Heavy Metal, each representing unique subcultures.

“Many of these subgenres, such as Black Metal, Death Metal, Thrash Metal, and the New Wave of British Heavy Metal evolved in specific geographical settings, often referred to as ‘scenes’. While unique scenes have evolved across the globe, the bulk of Heavy Metal’s bands have originated within countries in the northern latitudes.

“Australia is uniquely positioned within this global evolution, owing to its historical connection to the United Kingdom and shared cultural affinities with its colonial originator.

“While remote from the geographical heart of Heavy Metal culture, Australia has developed its own unique and passionate approach, producing a number of high profile bands.”

The course itself hopes to answer a number of questions, focusing on themes of lyrical content in Australian metal, the relationship between the genre and colonialism, the role of gender in the genre, and its defining characteristics.

Check out ‘heavy metal’ by Bring Me The Horizon:

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Speaking to Kerrang!, Professor Simon Springer explains that the creation of the position came from his recent move to Australia from Canada, during which he requested funding for two PhD students.

“I had free reign to recruit students to work in areas of personal interest,” Professor Springer explained. “And as a life-long metal fan who has only recently started to do some work in the area of metal studies, I figured this would be a good conduit to further my research agenda in this area.

“Certainly when I was a PhD student, I would have loved for someone to tell me that studying about metal is a legitimate academic pursuit!

I also think the opportunities for funding in this particular area are few and far between, so I thought why not put a call out for applications and see if anyone is interested in studying the geography of heavy metal?”

If you’ve got the credentials and are interested in applying, be sure to head along to Professor Simon Springer’s website for more information regarding the application process.

Check out ‘Intra Venus’ by Ne Obliviscaris:

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