Ideas and Society to feature at Bendigo

The countdown is on to the much‐anticipated Bendigo Writers Festival, which will feature a feast of La Trobe University academics among some of Australia's top authors.

La Trobe University sponsors the event and will bring its highly successful Ideas and Society forum to Bendigo, with three Ideas and Society events included in the three‐day festival program.

The brainchild of Emeritus Professor Robert Manne, Ideas and Society unites some of Australia's leading thinkers and public figures in a forum for intellectual debate and exploration of ideas.

'This is the first time La Trobe's Ideas and Society Program has been involved with the Bendigo Writers Festival,' Professor Manne said.

'We are very excited about the prospect. For us, it is a perfect fit.'

Bendigo Writers Festival is currently in its third year and the action‐packed program features an impressive 50 events hosted throughout the vibrant regional centre.

First up on the Ideas and Society agenda – at 10am Saturday 9 August at Bendigo's Capital Theatre – will be Indigenous/Australian, a conversation between novelist Alex Miller and philosopher and author of Romulus My Father, Raimond Gaita.

The pair will discuss Miller's remarkable award‐winning novels set in what he calls the 'Stone Country'. Alex Miller and Raimond Gaita are close friends. Both are from Central Victoria.

The festival coincides with the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War and on Saturday 9 August from 3 to 4pm, historian Joan Beaumont will present at the Capital Theatre.

Professor Beaumont is the author of the recently published but already celebrated Broken Nation, and will discuss with Robert Manne the profound impact of WWI on Australian society, including on provincial cities like Bendigo.

The final Ideas and Society event will take place from 3.30pm on Sunday 10 August 2014 at the Bendigo Bank Theatre, when Raimond Gaita and Robert Manne discuss the publication of a new work celebrating Professor Gaita's life and work, A Sense For Humanity.

The festival will launch on Friday 8 August 2014 with Blanche D'Alpuget on Power. Acting Vice Chancellor Jane Long will formally introduce the esteemed author.

The full program, which includes a range of La Trobe academics, is available here.

Media contact:

Leah Humphrys - Media and Communications

T: 03 9479 5353

E: l.humphrys@latrobe.edu.au

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