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In partnership with the Sydney Writers Festival, the National Library continues to offer live screenings of the festival, to its heritage-listed theatre.


Barrie Cassidy & Friends: Biden’s America

Friday, 30 April 2021 10:00:00 11:00:00 AEST

Panel

Barrie’s back! Festival favourite and celebrated journalist Barrie Cassidy presents four big conversations on the issues of the day. Joined by a range of experts and colleagues, this is smart, analytical and challenging live journalism from one of the best.

Evan Osnos, New Yorker journalist and award-winning author of the biography Joe Biden: American Dreamer, has spent years studying the newly minted 46th President of the United States. Based on hundreds of interviews – with Biden and his political peers, allies and opponents – Evan appears live via video to offer his insights into the man taking the presidency in a time of extraordinary turmoil.

Following Barrie’s interview, former premier and foreign minister Bob Carr and the United States Studies Centre’s Gorana Grgic will reflect on what to expect next from Biden and America.

Evan Osnos, author of Joe Biden, appears live via video to discuss the Biden presidency with Barrie Cassidy. Barrie is then joined by a panel of experts to talk about an America under pressure.


Participants: Barrie Cassidy, Evan Osnos


Are You There, Sydney? It’s Me, Judy Blume

Friday, 30 April 2021 12:00:00 13:00:00 AEST

Conversation

For generations of readers, Judy Blume is an icon. Beginning in the late 1960s, her celebrated novels were formative for young readers and future writers alike. Her children’s stories, including Fudge and Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, were funny, irreverent and riotous precursors to the blockbuster kids’ series of today. And her young adult books were beloved – and sometimes banned – for their free and frank depictions of puberty and sexuality. Join Judy appearing live via video as she talks with Sophie Black about her body of work, which exceeds some 85 million in sales, and on her life now happily running a bookstore on an island in Florida.

Judy Blume, the prolific author of irreverent and celebrated books for young and old readers alike, appears live via video to discuss her storied career with Sophie Black.


Participants: Sophie Black, Judy Blume


But Not Forgotten

Friday, 30 April 2021 14:00:00 15:00:00 AEST

Panel

When a beloved author dies, there is consolation in knowing that their books – the culminated words of a lifetime in letters – outlive them and tether us to their memory. However the beauty of those words isn’t simply a static point in time; it continues to evolve in the minds of the writers and thinkers who follow them. Four Festival guests reflect on the powerful work of four writers taken from us in the past year. A session of reflection, tribute and celebration featuring Michelle de Kretser on Sydney literary great Elizabeth Harrower; Kerry O’Brien on legendary political reporter Mungo MacCallum; Michael Robotham on spy master John le Carré; and Sally Warhaft on Jan Morris.

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Four Festival guests reflect on the powerful work of four writers taken from us in the past year. Featuring Michelle de Kretser on Sydney literary great Elizabeth Harrower; Kerry O’Brien on legendary political reporter Mungo MacCallum; Michael Robotham on spy master John le Carré; and Sally Warhaft on Jan Morris.


Participants: Michelle de Kretser, Kerry O'Brien, Michael Robotham, Sally Warhaft


The Larrikin Lie

Friday, 30 April 2021 16:00:00 17:00:00 AEST

Panel

One of the enduring beliefs of Australian identity is the idea that we as a nation embody the larrikin spirit, that our population are easy going, anti-establishment, laissez-faire. But arguably, our success in responding to COVID-19 points to a different truth. Perhaps, behind our ‘she’ll be right’ veneer, we’re an anxious, obedient, state-regulated people. David Marr and Rebecca Huntley separate the shit-stirrers from the boot-lickers, with ABC’s Laura Tingle.

We like to think we’re a devil-may-care, larrikin-loving country, but David Marr and Rebecca Huntley separate truth from myth, as they explore our compliant, obedient, authority-loving ways, with ABC’s Laura Tingle.


Participants: Rebecca Huntley, David Marr, Laura Tingle


Barrie Cassidy & Friends: Opposition and Dissent

Saturday, 1 May 2021 10:00:00 11:00:00 AEST

Panel

Barrie’s back! Festival favourite and celebrated journalist Barrie Cassidy presents four big conversations on the issues of the day. Joined by a range of experts and colleagues, this is smart, analytical and challenging live journalism from one of the best.

What does it mean to live your politics? Is a life of protest and dissent good for the soul or is it soul destroying? Former deputy leader of the Australian Greens Scott Ludlam was a senator from 2008 to 2017. Scott speaks to Barrie about his new book Full Circle, which explores a new approach to political and environmental change.

Barrie and Scott are then joined by Magda Szubanski to discuss the triumphs and disappointments of activism and advocacy, and Sally McManus to share the challenges and advantages of expressing dissent from an institutional base.

Former senator Scott Ludlam discusses his new book Full Circle with Barrie Cassidy, exploring new approaches to political and environmental change. Barrie and Scott are then joined by a panel of experts to discuss dissent, opposition and protest.


Participants: Barrie Cassidy, Scott Ludlam


Isabel Wilkerson: Caste – The Lies That Divide Us

Saturday, 1 May 2021 12:00:00 13:00:00 AEST

Conversation

Isabel Wilkerson’s Caste: The Lies that Divide Us fast became one of the world’s most talked about books this past year for its clear-eyed survey of the unspoken social hierarchy that pervades history and our lives today. Drawing parallels between America, India and Nazi Germany, the Pulitzer Prize–winning author argues that race and class divisions are largely informed by a powerful, unacknowledged caste system that everyone knows in their bones. Join Isabel, who will appear live via video, in conversation with [MODERATOR] about the myths of meritocracy, the endurance of white supremacy and what we can do to dismantle the corrosive social hierarchy that persists throughout the world today.

{Supported by ARA.}

Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist and author of Caste, Isabel Wilkerson, appears live via video to discuss her internationally bestselling study of the powerful and unspoken social hierarchy that shapes our lives. Challenge your assumptions and take an eye-opening look beneath the surface of ordinary life.


Participants: Isabel Wilkerson


Sarah Krasnostein & Maria Tumarkin

Saturday, 1 May 2021 14:00:00 15:00:00 AEST

Conversation

After the runaway success of Sarah Krasnostein’s debut The Trauma Cleaner: One Woman’s Extraordinary Life in Death, Decay & Disaster, Sarah spent time in Australia and the US talking to six extraordinary people who held fast to a belief even though it rubbed against the grain of conventional wisdom. Her research culminated in The Believer: Encounters with Love, Death & Faith, a deeply humane and deftly drawn enquiry into the power of belief. Sarah is joined by fellow observer of human nature, Maria Tumarkin, to explore what we believe in and why – from ghosts and UFOs to God and the devil, to dying with autonomy and beyond.

{Thanks to Rosie Block.}

In a very special conversation, author of The Trauma Cleaner Sarah Krosnostein discusses her new book, The Believer, a deftly drawn enquiry into the power of belief, with Maria Tumarkin.


Participants: Maria Tumarkin, Sarah Krasnostein


Richard Flanagan & Laura Tingle

Saturday, 1 May 2021 16:00:00 17:00:00 AEST

Conversation

Richard Flanagan’s latest book The Living Sea of Waking Dreams offers a tender, haunting portrait of a world disappearing around us. With Laura Tingle, he reflects on capturing in words the things we’re losing.

{Supported by ARA.}

Richard Flanagan’s latest book The Living Sea of Waking Dreams offers a tender, haunting portrait of a world disappearing around us. With Laura Tingle, he reflects on capturing in words the things we’re losing.


Participants: Richard Flanagan, Laura Tingle


Barrie Cassidy & Friends: The Canberra Bubble

Sunday, 2 May 2021 10:00:00 11:00:00 AEST

Panel

Barrie’s back! Festival favourite and celebrated journalist Barrie Cassidy presents four big conversations on the issues of the day. Joined by a range of experts and colleagues, this is smart, analytical and challenging live journalism from one of the best.

Political biography gives us insights into the individuals behind the politics, but it can also play an integral role in shaping how our political leaders are more widely understood. Peter van Onselen’s new book {How Good is Scott Morrison?} kicks off a conversation with Barrie about how to write about our leaders beyond their carefully cultivated images.

Christine Wallace and Niki Savva, both authors of significant political biographies, join the chat to see how deep dives into the lives of the people running the show allow us to better understand what’s really going on in Canberra.

Barrie Cassidy interviews political academic and journalist Peter van Onselen about his new biography of Scott Morrison. Barrie and Peter are then joined by a panel of experts to explore what insights political biographies offer into Canberra.


Participants: Barrie Cassidy, Peter van Onselen


George Miller: Beyond Thunderdome

Sunday, 2 May 2021 12:00:00 13:00:00 AEST

Conversation

George Miller AO is a legend of cinema. From Mad Max to Babe to the recent triumph of Fury Road (with a Happy Feet or two along the way), it’s hard to think of a more revolutionary creative figure in Australia today.

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George Miller AO is a legend of cinema. From Mad Max to Babe to the recent triumph of Fury Road (with a Happy Feet or two along the way), it’s hard to think of a more revolutionary creative figure in Australia today.


Participants: George Miller


Jan Fran & Judith Lucy

Sunday, 2 May 2021 14:00:00 15:00:00 AEST

Conversation

Walkley Award–winning reporter Jan Fran and much-loved comedian Judith Lucy (Turns Out, I’m Fine) talk about humour and memoir, coping and not coping, and what it means to be fine.


Participants: Jan Fran, Judith Lucy


Great Adaptations: Margaret and David Return

Sunday, 2 May 2021 16:00:00 17:00:00 AEST

Conversation

"Greatly missed on TV screens, the nation’s favourite film critics Margaret Pomeranz and David Stratton reunite in a special event discussing movie adaptations of Australian books. The famously sparring duo settle back into their critics’ chairs to offer their top five for which standout movies do justice to the original text, the five-star films that bested the books and the flops that lost their lustre when transposed from page to screen.

{Supported by PlayfairTan.}

Margaret Pomeranz and David Stratton, Australia’s favourite film critics, reunite on stage to debate the best and worst movie adaptations of Australian books.


Participants: Margaret Pomeranz, David Stratton

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National Library Theatre

Australia

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National Library of Australia
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