GR60: First Things First

Dr. Shireen Morris, Paul Daley & Melissa Lucashenko moderated by Dr. Sandra Phillips

Saturday 25 August 2018
4.00PM – 5.00PM
Visions Theatre
National Museum of Australia

‘We invite you to walk with us in a movement of the Australian people for a better future'. This is the final sentence of the Uluru Statement.

The Griffith Review has produced a special edition called First Things First and the panel will reflect on some of those contributors. They are: the moderator of the session and co-editor of First Things First, Dr. Sandra Phillips, successful author of adult and young adult fiction and non-fiction, Melissa Lucashenko; Walkley Award winning political journalist, playwright and novelist, Paul Daley; and Melbourne Law School academic researching Indigenous constitutional recognition, Dr. Shireen Morris. Join us for an important discussion about the future of indigenous recognition.

Dr. Shireen Morris is a lawyer, postdoctoral fellow at the University of Melbourne Law School, and a senior adviser on constitutional reform to Cape York Institute. She is the co-editor of The Forgotten People: Liberal and Conservative Approaches to Recognising Indigenous Peoples with Damien Freeman and the editor of A Rightful Place: A Roadmap to Recognition. Shireen is a regular commentator on TV, radio and print media.

Paul Daley is an author, journalist, essayist and short story writer. Several of his books have been shortlisted in major Australian literary awards and his journalism has been recognised with numerous prizes including two Walkley Awards, one for Indigenous journalism. His essays appear regularly in Meanjin and Griffith Review (including in GR’s recent Indigenous issue, First Things First) and in compilations including The Best Australian Science Writing (2016) and The Honest History Book (2017). He writes Postcolonial, a column for The Guardian about Australian history, national identity and Indigenous culture. He has just completed his second novel, Jesustown.

Melissa Lucashenko  is an award-winning writer of novels including  Steam Pigs, Mullumbimby  and  Hard Yards, and an essayist whose work regularly appears in Griffith REVIEW. She lives between Brisbane and the Bundjalung nation, and has been a board member of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Arts Board of the Australia Council. In this interview she speaks about her piece 'Sinking below sight', a report from outer-Brisbane's impoverished 'Black Belt' and the stories of three women living with the day-to-day challenges of poverty, domestic violence and life on welfare.

A member of the Wakka Wakka and Gooreng Gooreng nations in Queensland, Sandra Phillips is an academic, researcher, editor, and former publisher. A member of the Indigenous professoriate at the University of Technology Sydney, Sandra coordinates Indigenous higher degree by research from Jumbunna Institute for Indigenous Education and Research (JIIER). Sandra’s research interests are in Indigenous story in creative and media forms across domains of creation, production, and reception. Past Chair of the First Nations Australia Writers Network (FNAWN), Sandra has held many leadership roles in the arts and culture sectors. Sandra has a Doctor of Philosophy (Literary Studies).