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A Foreign Country: Travels through the Past

26 October, 2021 @ 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm


Lucky but lame — Australia’s unhappy relationship with risk with Mark Kenny

Presented as part of ‘A Foreign Country: Travels through the Past’ series

‘A Foreign Country: Travels through the Past’ is a series of fortnightly lectures hosted by the State Library of NSW on Tuesday evenings at 5.30 pm between 31 August and 9 November 2021 .

Australia used to be revered as a social laboratory, unencumbered by class and possessed of a free-wheeling confidence in modernity. Home to the oldest union-based labour party in the world, it was the first country to mandate an eight-hour working day, the minimum living wage and compulsory arbitration, and the first to extend the full electoral franchise to women. Many other reforms followed. Yet in the twenty-first century, the ‘young and free’ country exhibits a social and political arthritis. This lecture contrasts Australia’s image as secular, progressive and egalitarian with the reality of its risk-averse politics.

Host of the popular ANU podcast, (Democracy Sausage) the Australian Studies Institute’s Professor Mark Kenny is the author of countless articles and columns and is a regular commentator on Australian and international TV and radio. His most recent publication is: ‘Banks, Marriage Equality, Climate: How Malcolm Turnbull’s retreat hastened his own demise’ in From Turnbull to Morrison: The Trust Divide, edited by Mark Evans, Michelle Grattan and Brendan McCaffrie. He is a former chief political correspondent/national affairs editor of the Sydney Morning HeraldThe Age and The Canberra Times, and is currently vice-president of the National Press Club.

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26 October, 2021
5:30 pm - 6:30 pm
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State Library NSW
+61 2 9273 1414
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