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David Vann: An Ode to Literary Tradition


Published in 20 languages, internationally best-selling author David Vann has written essays, stories, features, novels and a memoir. His books have won 15 prizes and appeared on 70 Best Books of the Year lists in a dozen countries. Currently working on a translation of Beowulf, today Vann reflects on his body of work, and the usefulness, and importance, of literary tradition. Where would this neo-classical author, writing out of an American landscape tradition, be without Greek tragedy, Old English meter, and Chaucer’s hagiography?


We love exploring ideas at the Wheeler Centre, and encouraging others to do the same. That’s why every Thursday lunchtime we hand the microphone over to the great thinkers, dreamers and orators of our time.

With a dazzling range of passionate speakers and unusual topics, our soapbox provides a platform for the eclectic, topical and enlightening stories you won’t hear elsewhere. This is the most memorable lunch break you’ll have all week.

If you’re in need of sustenance of body as well as mind, the MOAT lunch cart will be serving delicious $15 lunchboxes in the performance space from 12.20pm.



David Vann

David Vann is an internationally bestselling author published in nineteen languages. He is the winner of fourteen prizes, and his books (Legend of a Suicide, Caribou Island, Dirt, A Mile Down, Goat Mountain and Last Day On Earth) have appeared on seventy Best Books lists in a dozen countries. He is ... Read more


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176 Little Lonsdale Street Melbourne Victoria 3000

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The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land on which we live and work. We pay our respects to the people of the Kulin Nation and all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past and present.