Race, religion & identity
The Wheeler Centre
Private Parts: More than Queer
Adolfo Aranjuez, Peter Waples-Crowe and Jax Jacki Brown at the Wheeler Centre
Within the letters LGBTIQA+ are myriad meeting points between intersecting identities – race, ethnicity, disability, class and many more – which can be sites of pain and pride. Campaigns for rights and services can have broad, significant and often unheralded impacts on various sections of the community.
With same-sex marriage now legal in Australia, what are the most pressing issues currently facing Australia’s diverse queer population, and how well are they being represented?
Presented in partnership with Archer magazine.
The Wheeler Centre
Dhonielle Clayton: The Art of Inclusion
Melissa Keil and Dhonielle Clayton at the Wheeler Centre
In a response to a reader’s letter, YA author Malinda Lo once wrote, ‘Diversity is not important. Diversity is reality. Human beings are not all the same.’ If books function as tools of empathy, what happens when we never see ourselves in them, let alone at the centre of a story? How can we support and encourage real representation in our literature, especially for younger readers?
Dhonielle Clayton is a bestselling author of YA fiction, including The Belles and The Everlasting Rose. She’s a former teacher and librarian. And she’s the COO of We Need Diverse Books, the US-based campaign for a more inclusive and representative literary milieu. The movement began as a hashtag, went viral, then formalised into a non-profit in order to methodically press for progress.
Clayton joins host Melissa Keil to talk about her writing, as well as the importance of Own Voices stories, and some of the problems with traditional publishing models. She highlights ways these models can shift while still retaining the crucial ability to connect with readers, and considers how we can create a more equitable and exciting literary culture.
Claire G. Coleman: The Old Lie in Kyneton
Claire G. Coleman believes speculative fiction is a powerful political tool. ‘It’s a genre in which there’s great scope for Aboriginal literature … It’s able to sneak politics into places people don’t expect to see it.'
Coleman's revelatory 2017 debut novel, Terra Nullius, depicted an alternative Australia – a continent of either the distant past or the distant future…
National Agitators: Confronting Australian Theatre
Warning: This recording contains some repeated coarse language.
Patricia Cornelius, Susie Dee and Nicci Wilks have been making radical and confronting theatre together for decades. ‘I’ve never believed the bullshit about how audiences don’t like risk,' Cornelius has said. 'They actually really do. I’ve seen it.'
Long-term collaborators, their work has more often found a home in innovative independent companies…
The Fifth Estate
Sally Warhaft and Michael Fullilove
What is Australia’s place in the world? How are we getting along with our neighbours? And how is our international outlook changing?
For this conversation, Sally Warhaft is joined by executive director of the Lowy Institute, Michael Fullilove. The pair discuss the foreign policy challenges Australia is facing now and into the future. Can we find ways to work better with our neighbours, especially Indonesia? How can we best navigate the increasing tension between China and the United States? How will the volatility of the Trump presidency and Brexit affect Australia in the years ahead? And what will Marise Payne bring to the role of Foreign Minister in a world of disruption and uncertainty?
Join us for a wide-ranging spotlight on foreign affairs, encompassing trade, alliances, cybersecurity and powerful and populous neighbours.
The Wheeler Centre
Mary Norris: From Comma Queen to Greek Geek
Copy editor and grammar nerd Mary Norris has seen the fabled linguistic traditions of the New Yorker up close – she has worked at the magazine for 40 years, most famously as query proofreader and Comma Queen. That experience forms the backbone of her first book, Between You & Me. ‘I hope writers will see that we are not the enemy,’ she has said of her profession. ‘We love the language.’
In her latest book, Greek to Me, Norris shares her love of all things Greek. Of course, it’s about language – how the Greeks adapted the Phoenician alphabet, and the surprising ways Greek informs English – but it also documents Norris’s encounters with Greek gods, wine, men, and olive groves. Myths are reinterpreted; landmarks are sought out; beautiful coincidences of word and symbol are excavated.
Mary Norris returned to Melbourne for a chat about her travels through Greek language, culture and art (and, of course, so much more) with Penny Modra.
Penny Modra and Mary Norris
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