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In a Dark Wood and Out Again: Freedom

I have missed listening to Radio National's Book Show of late. I seem to have been in the wrong place at the wrong time for over a month. If today's program is a guide then I have missed an enormous amount of good stuff! Jonathan Franzen was the guest and in a repeat of an interview from November 2010 he discussed his work, including his new novel Freedom, with Ramona Koval. My attention was grabbed in his first response when asked about his championing of Paula Fox's work: You know, you enter a dark wood at a certain point in your life...

Do People Who Have Lost Their Voice Have To Do It?

Introduction I undertook three years of fieldwork in two schools in the mid 1980s as part of my part-time PhD studies in the teaching of boys' physical education in the secondary school. Other than a chapter in a book of readings edited by Andrew Sparkes (1992) the only account of my work is in the thesis (1989). The thesis raised some sensitive issues and with the agreement of those in my fieldwork I placed a voluntary embargo on publication. Twenty-one years on all those involved have moved from the fieldwork schools and I would like to share some of the contents...

John Ralston Saul

Another treasure from Ramona Koval and Radio National's Book Show, The Making of John Ralston Saul. An interview recorded at the Sydney Writers' Festival with a man who cares about a lot of things. And he cares about writing about them and communicating them to people all over the world Here is the Podcast and a link to John Ralston Saul's website. Photo Credit John Ralston Saul

Engaging Readers

This week I have been introduced to two delightful writers. I met their work through Radio National programs. I have been thinking about writing a great deal recently in my role as supervisor of a number of student theses and research projects at the University of Canberra. I have been thinking about engaging implied readers too. Ironically this is a post about writing stimulated by being a listener. On Tuesday Richard Stirzaker was a guest on Bush Telegraph and was interviewed by Michael Mackenzie. The interview celebrated Richard's ability to explain scientific principles to a lay audience. The interview centred...

Listening Pleasure: Thinking About Performance

This week on my journeys into Canberra I have had an opportunity to catch up with ABC Classic FM and Radio National. Three items in particular helped me think more about performance. Two were symphonies played on Classic FM and one was a discussion about writing on Late Night Live. The two symphonies were: 1. Aaron Copland conducting Appalachian Spring (1979) 2. Henryk Górecki's Symphony of Sorrowful Songs (Symfonia pieśni żałosnych) Aaron Copland's performance as a conductor composer encouraged me to think about how tacit knowledge is made available and confirmed my fascination with performances of understanding. Goriecki's symphony was so beautiful (it...