Health, medicine & psychology
Nation, Clan, Self: Paul Beatty, Susan Faludi and Ivan Coyote in Conversation
‘Is identity something you "choose," or is it the very thing you can't escape?’
In 2017, the personal has never been more political – and the political never more personal. Still, even as we obsessively unpack how to best define ourselves and others, a clear understanding of ‘identity’ can prove frustratingly elusive.
Jane Caro, Ivan Coyote, Susan Faludi and Paul Beatty
'Community’s not something you consume. It’s something that you build.'Ivan Coyote
There are few better placed to untangle our often divergent conceptions of identity than Paul Beatty, Susan Faludi and Ivan Coyote.
Paul Beatty’s bitingly funny work – including the satirical, Man Booker Prize-winning The Sellout – explores the complexities and contradictions of what it means to ‘be black’ in a ‘post-racial’ world.
Susan Faludi’s examinations of what it means to ‘be a woman’, meanwhile, have driven her to explore the shifting sands of gender inequality. Her latest work, In The Darkroom, explores the failure of existing transgender narratives to account for the complexity of her father’s late-in-life gender transition.
Transgender Canadian spoken word artist Ivan Coyote is well aware of how complicated gender-based conceptions of identity can be. The author and lead performer of Tomboy Survival Guide, Coyote’s books and performances are designed to guide their audience toward circumnavigating the gender binary ‘in seven thousand easy steps’.
What does it mean to write the self, or to write about nationhood – and how do we best fight to ensure others understand how we want to be seen? Host Jane Caro talks with three acclaimed international authors and artists whose work is driven by a challenge to interrogate how we move between categories, or are forced to inhabit them.
The Fifth Estate
Dealing with Drugs
The Australia21 report, ‘Can Australia respond to drugs more effectively and safely?’, released in March of this year, argues that it’s time to bring an end to the costly, unavailing campaign of criminalising drug users – and to instead adopt a wide approach to harm reduction.
The report’s 13 key recommendations are groundbreaking, and drawn from conversations between people with…
Roxane Gay’s latest book, a collection of short fiction called Difficult Women. The pages of the book are populated with resilient, perverse, bold, provocative, hilarious and heroic female characters.
It’s some of these very same qualities that have propelled Gay herself to feminist stardom. As a writer, and as a distinctly 21st-century voice in American feminism, Gay embraces complexity…
Invasion of the Pod People
Mysteries, Mazes and the Making of S-Town, with Brian Reed
S-Town has rattled the conventions of longform audio journalism, broken podcast download records and provoked a deluge of obsessive online commentary and conjecture. Made by reporter Brian Reed with the team behind Serial and This American Life, the series is enthralling and disquieting, and marks another shift in podcasting’s creative renaissance.
At the centre of Reed’s series – set in…
Direct Line: Manus Island and The Messenger
Abdul Aziz Muhamat – originally from Sudan, now a refugee detained on Manus – has been using a smuggled phone to give Australians a first-hand account of life in detention. Since March 2016, Aziz has been corresponding with Melbourne journalist Michael Green, using WhatsApp to relay voice messages. The Messenger is a ten-part podcast series from the Wheeler Centre…
Post-Millennial: The Meaning of Adulthood Today
When it comes to generational divides, unflattering stereotypes abound. Baby-boomers are Beatles-obsessed real-estate hogs; Gen Xers are vinyl-fetishing finger-waggers and millennials are entitled, avocado-munching whiners.
Highlighting generational differences is a great way for journalists to get clicks, but how accurately do these categories really describe us? And, for the so-called ‘millennials’, what are the real and perceived differences in choices…
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