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Events (5)

Thursday, 02 August 2012 15:45

Seymour Biography Lecture

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Investigative Reporter of the Spirit: The Search for Five Women

Presented by Jeffrey Meyers


Renowned biographer Professor Jeffrey Meyers delivered the eighth annual Seymour Biography Lecture – on the craft of biography, autobiography, and memoir. In his work on Joseph Conrad, Wyndham Lewis, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, and Robert Frost, Meyers was fascinated to learn that each of these married writers had an intriguing, but elusive, lover. He found that these mysterious lovers assume an independent existence and had extraordinary lives worthy of a full-length study. In this lecture, Meyers reveals what happens when minor characters take on lives of their own.

Jeffrey Meyers – one of twelve Americans who are Fellows of the Royal Society of Literature – is one of the most respected scholars in his field. He has published fifty books and 800 articles on modern American, English, and European literature, has edited two collections of essays on biography and has lectured at numerous universities across the world. His interests include bibliography, editing, literary criticism, art history, and film. Based in Berkeley, California, Meyers is the author of several works on T. E. Lawrence and George Orwell and has written about the lives of Katherine Mansfield, Robert Lowell, D.H. Lawrence, Edgar Allan Poe, Edmund Wilson, Humphrey Bogart, Errol and Sean Flynn, Somerset Maugham, Arthur Miller and Marilyn Monroe, Samuel Johnson, and John Huston.

Jeffrey Meyers delivered the lecture at Australian Book Review on 17 September 2012.




Click here to stream the podcast


 Seymour Biography Lecture 2012, recorded at the National Library of Australia on 13 September 2012.


Supported by John and Heather Seymour, Australian Book Review, the State Library of New South Wales, and the National Library of Australia.

The Seymour Biography Lecture was also presented in Canberra and Sydney at the National Library of Australia and the State Library of New South Wales respectively.



Friday, 20 July 2012 12:55

Fireside Chats

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Sonnet-o-thon – Wednesday 28 November


‘Being your slave, what should I but tend / Towards the hours and times ...’ of ABR’s first Sonnet-o-thon. Lovers of Shakespeare’s incomparable sonnets – lovers of suave poetry in general – should not miss our first Sonnet-o-thon. Several writers and poets – Lisa Gorton, Ian Donaldson, Rachel Fensham, Peter Rose, among others – will read some (not all) of Shakespeare’s 154 sonnets, with comments on this heady, enigmatic suite. This will be the last of our 2012 events in Studio 2. Everyone is welcome – come along and celebrate fine poetry – and a memorable year for ABR.



Wednesday, 28 November

6 p.m. for prompt 6.15 p.m. start


Australian Book Review

Studio 2, Boyd

207–229 City Road

Southbank 3006


This is a free event, but bookings are essential:

(03) 9699 8822 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

ABR’s Fireside Chats are generously supported by ABR Patrons.

Australian Book Review is most grateful to the City of Melbourne and the Creative Spaces program for their support.

Friday, 20 July 2012 12:50


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Announcement ceremony:
2014 Peter Porter Poetry Prize

Wednesday 7 May, Studio 2 Boyd Centre, Southbank (6 pm)

Celebrate 2014's Peter Porter Poetry Prize winner with judges – Felicity Plunkett and Lisa Gorton (ABR’s Poetry Editor) – at a special ceremony, held at ABR's home.  Light refreshments will be provided, along with readings from each of the shortlisted poets' work.

This is a free, public event but bookings (via ABR only) are essential: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (03) 9699 8822.

ABR events are generously supported by our Patrons.

Friday, 20 July 2012 12:55

Past Fireside Chats

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New Poetry with Michael Farrell and Peter Rose – Wednesday 12 September

It was a wild and windy night for our second Fireside Chat at Boyd. Some of our high old nineteenth-century windows (newly automated) chose to open of their own accord for the first time, which rather added to the atmosphere, but our two readers persisted in this first of many straight readings at ABR’s new headquarters.

The readers were Michael Farrell and Peter Rose, both of whom have recently published new poetry collections. Earlier this year Michael Farrell won the Peter Porter Poetry Prize. This was a good opportunity to celebrate ABR’s long and rich association with Peter Porter. Michael Farrell read from his latest book, open sesame (Giramondo, 2012). Peter Rose read mostly from Crimson Crop (UWA Publishing, 2012), which has just won a Queensland Literary Award.




Michael Farrell grew up in Bombala, New South Wales, and has lived in Melbourne since 1990. Recent publications include a raiders guide (2008), thempark (2010) and thou sand (2011). He co-edited Out of the Box: Contemporary Australian Gay and Lesbian Poets (2009), and his latest book, open sesame, is published by Giramondo. Michael is the winner of the 2012 Peter Porter Poetry Prize.

Peter Rose has published five poetry collections, most recently Crimson Crop (UWA Publishing, 2012). His family memoir, Rose Boys (2001), won the National Biography Award in 2003, and his latest novel is Roddy Parr (Fourth Estate, 2010). He has been Editor of Australian Book Review since 2001.



A Night with Jonson, Donne and Shakespeare – 15 August 2012

On August 15 a capacity audience gathered in Studio 2 at Boyd – Melbourne’s new venue for books and ideas. Lisa Gorton and Ian Donaldson spoke about their specialities – John Donne and Ben Jonson, respectively – and the general ‘Shakespeare moment’. They read from their works and discussed the marked differences in temperament and style between these two commanding figures of English literature.

This was the first of our Fireside Chats, which will take place in Studio 2 on the second Wednesday of each month. Keep an eye on the website for more details of ABR’s fast-growing list of events.


A Night with Jonson, Donne and Shakespeare – podcast


Press the play button to stream the podcast.

{audio}Fireside Chat No. 1|Fireside_Chat1.mp3{/audio}

Click the link below to download the podcast as an mp3.

mp3 Fireside Chat






Lisa Gorton studied at the Universities of Melbourne and Oxford, completing a doctorate on John Donne’s poetry and prose. A Rhodes Scholar, she completed a Masters in Renaissance Literature and a Doctorate on John Donne at Oxford University, and was awarded the John Donne Society Award for Distinguished Publication in Donne Studies. Her poetry collection, Press Release, won the Victorian Premier’s Prize for Poetry in 2008.

Ian Donaldson is a former President of the Australian Academy of the Humanities and an Honorary Professorial Fellow in the School of Culture and Communication at the University of Melbourne. He is General Editor of The Cambridge Edition of the Works of Ben Jonson, and author of Ben Jonson: A Life, which has just been shortlisted for the James Tait Black Memorial Prize.


Monday, 29 April 2013 12:22

Proust and Montaigne

Written by

Proust and Montaigne – Writing the Self, May 15 at 6.p.m

Proust and Montaigne bold

Francophiles, essayists, and Proustians will not want to miss a joint ABR and Melbourne Library Services event to be held in the East Melbourne Library  on Wednesday, 15 May (6 p.m.). Noted French scholars and enthusiasts Véronique Duché and Colin Nettelbeck (who reviews Camus’s Algerian Chronicles for us in the May issue) will be in discussion about Montaigne and Proust, with particular references to convergences in their remarkable works. This is a free event, but reservations are essential:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Please note this event is now booked out.

Australian Book Review Logo

Studio 2
207-229 City Road
Southbank VIC 3006

Tel: (03) 9699 8822
Fax: (03) 9699 8803

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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