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Robert Dessaix: What Days Are For


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Robert Dessaix is one of Australia’s most cherished literary authors, acclaimed for his autobiographies, travel memoirs and fiction. For many years, he presented Books and Writing on ABC Radio National. In his latest book, What Days Are For, Robert shares his reflections from his hospital bed, recovering from a heart attack that threatens to kill him, as he reads the Philip Larkin poem ‘Days’ and wonders: what have his days been for? What and who has he loved – and why?

He’ll trace a path through travel, love, intimacy, language, youth and death, in conversation with Ramona Koval.


Robert Dessaix

Robert Dessaix is a writer, translator, broadcaster and occasional essayist. From 1985 to 1995, after teaching Russian language and literature for many years at the Australian National University and the University of New South Wales, he presented the weekly Books and Writing program on ABC Radio Na... Read more

Ramona Koval

Ramona Koval is a writer who has worked as a journalist and broadcaster. Her most recent books are A Letter to Layla: Travels to our Deep Past and Near Future, Bloodhound: Searching For My Father, and By the Book: A Reader’s Guide to Life (all published by Text). She was the editor of two volumes ... Read more


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The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the traditional owners of the land on which we work. We pay our respects to the people of the Kulin Nation and all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders, past and present.