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Incorrigible Optimist

Gareth Evans was at the centre of Australian politics for much of his 21 years in parliament, serving as cabinet minister in both the Hawke and Keating Labor governments. His term as foreign minister, from 1988 to 1996, marked a pivotal time in Australian foreign affairs – and the start of an increased engagement with our Asian neighbours.

Since leaving politics, Evans has applied his talents to major posts in international relations, working on crisis resolution, genocide prevention and curbing nuclear proliferation.

What does Evans – whose memoir, Incorrigible Optimist, has just been released – make of the growing rumblings of discontent with the political establishment across the western world? And does he believe we can regain faith in political actors and institutions?

Join him in conversation with Sally Warhaft about politics, policy and public life – both yesterday, and today.

Who?

Portrait of Gareth Evans

Gareth Evans

Gareth Evans is a writer, academic, lawyer and former cabinet minister.

He was a Cabinet Minister in the Hawke and Keating Governments for thirteen years, as Attorney General, Minister for Resources & Energy, Transport & Communications, and Foreign Affairs; Leader of the Government in the Senate for four years; and Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the House of Representative for three years. After 21 years in the Australian Parliament, he led the Brussels-based International Crisis Group from 2000-2009.

Portrait of Sally Warhaft

Sally Warhaft

Sally Warhaft is a Melbourne broadcaster, anthropologist and writer and the host of the Wheeler Centre’s live journalism series, the Fifth Estate, now in its sixth year. She is a former editor of the Monthly magazine and the author of the bestselling book Well May We Say: The Speeches that Made Australia.

The Fifth Estate

Our long-running current affairs series, The Fifth Estate, is a mainstay of the Wheeler Centre programme. With our in-house news anchor Sally Warhaft at the helm, it's a series of in-depth conversations with guests from the world of politics, culture, journalism and international relations. It's free, it's fortnightly and it's rigorous long-form interviewing at its best.

Guests are announced in the weeks prior to events, so keep an eye on our website (or the Wheeler Weekly newsletter) for updates. Subscribe to the popular Fifth Estate podcast – or book a (free) ticket – for expert analysis on today's key debates.

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