Subscribe to the Wheeler Centre's podcast to hear full recordings of our talks, featuring the best in books, writing and ideas from Melbourne, Australia.
Broadly Speaking: Robin Wall Kimmerer and Tara June Winch
‘When a language dies, so much more than words are lost,’ the botanist and writer Robin Wall Kimmerer has said. ‘Language is the dwelling place of ideas that do not exist anywhere else.’ In our Broadly Speaking talk on translation and language, we bring together two First Nations writers whose work reflects on Indigenous languages and the languages of the natural world. Kimmerer is a professor of environmental biology at the State University of New York and an enrolled member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation. She’s also the author of the remarkable bestselling essay collection, Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants. In this podcast, she speaks with acclaimed Wiradjuri writer Tara June Winch, whose Miles Franklin-winning novel, The Yield, is about traditional language and the stories that words contain. Join them as they discuss how living organisms and living languages can connect us to the past and enrich our collective future.
Take Home Reading: Katerina Bryant
Take Home Reading is a new short-form audio series for readers and writers – shining a spotlight on Australian writers with recently released books. In each instalment, you’ll be introduced to a writer, learn a little about what they’ve been reading lately, and hear a short reading from their latest work. In this episode we’re talking to Katerina Bryant about her debut memoir Hysteria, a compassionate and insightful account of illness, strength and women’s stories.
Take Home Reading: Craig Silvey
In this episode of Take Home Reading we’re talking to Craig Silvey about his novel Honeybee, a tender coming-of-age story about a transgender teenager called Sam, a chance encounter she has with a man called Vic, and the ways in which both lives are changed by their unlikely friendship.
Take Home Reading: Chris Flynn
In this episode of Take Home Reading we’re talking to Chris Flynn about his novel Mammoth, a playfully original and thought-provoking story about how a fossil collection of prehistoric creatures came to be on sale at a natural history auction in New York in 2007 (narrated by a 13,000-year-old extinct mammoth).
Take Home Reading: Rawah Arja
In this episode of Take Home Reading we’re talking to Rawah Arja about her debut young adult novel The F Team, a funny and authentic story about what it means to grow up in Australia today.
Broadly Speaking: Aileen Moreton-Robinson: 20th Anniversary of Talkin' Up to the White Woman
To launch our Broadly Speaking series, we’re presenting the formidable Aileen Moreton-Robinson in conversation with critical race and whiteness scholar Fiona Nicoll. The pair discuss the twentieth anniversary of Moreton-Robinson's pivotal book, Talkin’ Up to the White Woman. What questions and experiences informed the writing of the book, and how does it seek to understand power? How did Moreton-Robinson experience colonialism in academia? How do some feminist movements clash with ideas of Indigenous sovereignty – and what are some alternative ways of thinking?
Customer ReviewsSee All
I loved the Rachel Kushner interview. The woman who interviewed her was so refreshing. Forgive the language, but I do find some of the interviewers a bit smart-arsey. However this interviewer was well - prepared and in all honesty when she began the introduction, I thought she’d never stop -but it was interesting. I sensed she was nervous. Rachel Kushner also sensed this and was so sweet and kind and encouraging. Gradually the interviewer warmed up and she was good. Asking well-thought out questions and she had a lovely turn of phrase. Rachel was very funny and I loved the interviewers laugh/giggle. The end result was just lovely - two intelligent and kind people conversing. Thank-you.
Longform discussions, not packaged trinkets
I love the Wheeler Centre podcast for what it offers in a fairly raw format: not just rich ideas, but the mechanics of thoughtful conversation and expertise that get you there. Compared to stuff like TED Talks, it's the difference between being told and being taught. Recommended for anybody with an interest in books and reading, the craft of writing and the task of figuring out what goes on in our complicated world.
John Clarke Memorial Service
Was so deeply touched by John's passing. Loved the mind of this marvellously funny, clever man. The words of Michael Leunig and Sam Neil left me in tears for a man I wished I'd known personally. John's body of work will stand the test of time. Vale John