The Wheeler Centre Gala 2018: Words on Fire: Tony Birch
For the 2018 Wheeler Centre Gala Night of Storytelling, we invited our speakers to probe a blazing, hot topic: the power of the written word and the loaded tenets of speech.
When do words inspire and when do they incite? When is speech free, and when is it hateful? Fighting words, funny words, insulting words and incendiary words – for better or for worse, language moves us and it matters.
‘We must thank a marginalised people who put their lives on the line to make this world a better place.’ In this section, Tony Birch discusses communities refusing to accept spiritual and physical death, even in the face of the end of the world.
Tony Birch is the author of Ghost River, which won the 2016 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Indigenous Writing, and Blood, which was shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Award. He is also the author of Shadowboxing, and three short story collections – Father’s Day, The Promise and Common People.
Tony is a frequent contributor to ABC local and national radio, and a regular guest at writers’ festivals. He lives in Melbourne and is a Senior Research Fellow at Victoria University.