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Preview: The Conversation Hour with Richard Fidler


Spend an hour in someone else's life. 'Conversations with Richard Fidler' draws you deeper into the life story of someone you may have heard about, but never met.

Copyright: Copyright 2018, Australian Broadcasting Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

Best of 2017: Candice Fox

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 11:00:00 +1100

How to raise a bestselling crime writer (R)

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Best of 2017: David George Haskell

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Listening to trees, nature's magnificent networkers (R)

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Best of 2017: Michael Adams

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Learning to freedive helped one man explore life and death (R)

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Best of 2017: Mary-Rose MacColl

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Mary-Rose MacColl on betrayal, motherhood and letting go of secrets (R)

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Best of 2017: Daniel Kish

Mon, 11 Dec 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Daniel Kish uses a self-initiated sonar, called echolocation, to navigate the world as a blind person (R)

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Best of 2017: Jimmy Webb

Fri, 08 Dec 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Being raised as the son of an Oklahoma preacher inspired the American Songbook of this prolific singer-songwriter (R)

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Graham Long and the 'quantum of compassion'

Thu, 07 Dec 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Wild funerals, and staff who jump the counter: a day in the life of Graham Long and the Wayside Chapel

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Turning to Beijing: Australia's future in the new Asia

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Hugh White says Australia faces a choice between the power keeping us safe, and the one making us rich

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Wild and full of longing: Australia's definitive pop anthems

Tue, 05 Dec 2017 11:00:00 +1100

From Johnny O'Keefe to Sia, via AC/DC — Andrew P. Street counts down Australia's greatest pop songs

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The struggle and the strife behind Steven Bradbury's race to Salt Lake City

Mon, 04 Dec 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Australia's best-known Olympic skater nearly died on the ice when he was 20. Eight years later, he won history's most unexpected gold medal

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Horses: a story collection

Fri, 01 Dec 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Colin Friels, Zelie Bullen, Pip Courtney, and drover Bruce Simpson on their deep love of horses (R)

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Love and family and Asperger's: Tony Attwood

Thu, 30 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Tony draws on decades of clinical experience to help couples and individuals navigate dating and love with Asperger's

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For better and for worse: becoming my wife’s carer

Wed, 29 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

How Bob and Jo’s married life changed course when Jo needed full-time care

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The man behind the legend of 'Eternity'

Tue, 28 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Roy Williams tells the story of Arthur Stace, who for decades rose before dawn to write a one-word sermon, in chalk on the footpaths of Sydney. ABC - Conversations

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The morality of robots: Genevieve Bell's predictions for the future of AI

Mon, 27 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Genevieve had never imagined a life in technology, until a chance meeting in a bar in Palo Alto

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Reinventing Susan: a study in survival

Fri, 24 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

How high-flyer Susan Duncan completely remade her life after a series of losses (R)

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Helen Garner at 75: still asking, what powers the human heart?

Thu, 23 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

A master storyteller reflects on stories she’s witnessed and crafted for the page

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Nelson Mandela's archivist and the failings of South Africa

Wed, 22 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Verne Harris on post-Apartheid South Africa, and life lessons from Madiba

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Fabulous Ada Delroy: serpentine dancer and vaudevillian

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Cartoonist and author Kaz Cooke traces the dramatic life of a singular woman

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Kevin Sheedy's fifty years in AFL

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

A true champion of the game reflects on opening up the AFL, and his dream to sell it to the world

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Bernard Fanning's Brisbane

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

A suburban Brisbane childhood, a particularly determined nun and the Beatles all shaped Bernard Fanning's music

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How Pixar became a creative powerhouse

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Lawrence Levy was hired by Steve Jobs in 1994, to save a struggling animation company with a secret project

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Tony Martin and the comedy of suburbia

Wed, 15 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Tales from one of Australia’s most prolific comedy writers and performers

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Nutritionist Rosemary Stanton: breaking from the Brethren

Tue, 14 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Rosemary Stanton and her family had to break free of a religious sect before she could attend university (R)

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How friendly were the 1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne?

Mon, 13 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Stories of subterfuge, tragedy and romance from the cold-war games

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Fishing in Eden

Fri, 10 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Historian and fishing enthusiast Anna Clark on the story of fishing in Australia

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A dynasty divided: the tragedy behind the Bradman of billiards

Thu, 09 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Australia’s sporting Lindrum family was dogged by scandal and tragedy

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The boy from Port Pirie who guided the Bee Gees to global fame

Wed, 08 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Stephen Dando Collins returns with the story of Robert Stigwood

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The story of Australian soccer, from ethnic clubs to the A-League

Tue, 07 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Sports writer Joe Gorman on the unique challenges facing Australia's 'beautiful game' ABC - Conversations

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Phoenix of the working-class: Beatrix Campbell and the changing face of Britain

Mon, 06 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Princess Diana, public housing and the patriarchy — politics is always personal for one of Britain's most influential thinkers

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How the ocean liner changed the world

Fri, 03 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Maritime historian Chris Frame unfolds the history of these engineering marvels (R)

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Drawing magic from life and landscapes: Alison Lester

Thu, 02 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

An adventurous spirit and deep connection to the land fill the pages of the books of this prolific author and illustrator

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The war of hearts and minds: Australia's Special Forces in Afghanistan

Wed, 01 Nov 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Chris Masters explains the fine balance between force and diplomacy in Uruzghan

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Unlocking the secret life of Amelia

Tue, 31 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

When Melinda Hildebrandt learned how to sign with her daughter Amelia, it began a new relationship between them

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Irish novelist Marian Keyes

Mon, 30 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Now a wildly popular author, for many years Marian doubted her ability to write

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A mid-life love story which all changed, one morning in Lisbon

Fri, 27 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Susan Francis met the love of her life in her fifties. But things with the miner called Wayne didn’t turn out as she planned

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Kayaking Sydney’s Harbour

Thu, 26 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Scott Bevan on the harbour’s vivid history, generous people and quiet pleasures

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The boxer puppy and the bird of prey

Wed, 25 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

A shocking event in Peta Clarke's early life saw her become one of the world's most respected animal trainers

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Seeing the world through a movie camera’s eye

Tue, 24 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Pieter de Vries has filmed the Earth's most remote corners - from its deepest oceans, to the jungles of Papua New Guinea. Pieter de Vries

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The mission of a flying midwife

Mon, 23 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Jan Becker is a helicopter pilot, and a midwife in Tanzania, where she teaches infant resuscitation

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Masha Gessen: what the US can learn from Russia

Fri, 20 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Russian-American journalist and author Masha Gessen believes Donald Trump is a threat to democracy

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2017 Man Booker Prize winner George Saunders

Thu, 19 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

George Saunders' first novel Lincoln in the Bardo centres around the grief that haunted Abraham Lincoln (R)

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The strange life of the twitcher

Wed, 18 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Sean Dooley is a twitcher, recording the lives of birds like the Godwit, which flies from Alaska to New Zealand without stopping

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Ears wide open: master field recordist Chris Watson

Tue, 17 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Capturing the sounds of wildlife, natural phenomena and secret worlds

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Friedrich and Flanagan: the con-man and his ghostwriter

Mon, 16 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Richard Flanagan recounts a strange chapter from early in his writing career

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Acts of valour and the cost of bravery

Fri, 13 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

How police officer Allan Sparkes became one of Australia's most highly decorated people (R) Allan Sparkes

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Times of horror and grace: a newsman's 40-year career

Thu, 12 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

The second of two episodes on Hugh Riminton's adventurous life in news reporting

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Journalism rescued Hugh Riminton from a troubled adolescence

Wed, 11 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

The first of two episodes on Hugh Riminton’s adventurous life in news reporting  

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The strange reality of life with severe OCD

Tue, 10 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Lily Bailey spent years making lists of 400 things she'd done wrong each day (R)

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Reconstructing a life after being diagnosed with bipolar disorder

Mon, 09 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Anita Link experienced her first major psychotic episode shortly after the birth of her first child (R) Anita Link

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Birds and the city: Darryl Jones

Fri, 06 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

(How well do magpies, bush turkeys and people live alongside each other? (R) Darryl Jones

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Mandolin virtuoso Avi Avital

Fri, 06 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Avi is revolutionising the image of traditional folk instrument, the mandolin (R)

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Leaping lexicons: David Astle and the joy of words

Thu, 05 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Australia's most exuberant word nerd, cryptic crossword setter and lover of the English language returns

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Inside The Family, the bizarre and brutal Australian cult

Wed, 04 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Rosie Jones and Chris Johnston investigated the notorious cult, that operated in secret for more than two decades

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Brylcreem, beehives and Devils on Horseback: the decade which changed Australia

Tue, 03 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Noeline Brown remembers the sixties as the most important decade of her life.

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The death of a neighbour which began an obsession

Mon, 02 Oct 2017 11:00:00 +1100

Writer Poe Ballantine tells the story of true mystery that will never be solved (R) Poe Ballantine

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The mystery of Lasseter's Reef: greed, hardship and hope

Fri, 29 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Warren Brown explores the fever sparked by claims of a gold reef in the Central Australian desert during the Great Depression (R) Warren Brown

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Becoming Eddie Ayres

Thu, 28 Sep 2017 10:00:00 +1000

Eddie left everything behind, moved to one of the most dangerous places on earth, and faced his true self

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A daughter's drowning sent a family on wildly different paths

Wed, 27 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Jesse Blackadder was 12 when her youngest sister Lucie drowned in the family's pool. The tragedy began a whole new story for her family

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Engineering myself: Mark Lesek and his bionic arm

Tue, 26 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Brilliant medical technology and uncommon determination have restored the mobility Mark lost in a car accident

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Australia's Romani Gypsies

Mon, 25 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Mandy Sayer has uncovered the history of a thriving Gypsy community

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The former NSW Police detective who turned to crime (fiction)

Fri, 22 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Karen M Davis's crime novels draw on her decades of experience as a NSW detective (R) Karen M Davis

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The politics of poker machines in Australia's poorest state

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

How gambling in Tasmania came to be dominated by a single company

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How Alexei Sayle blew up Britain's comedy scene

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Alexei Sayle brought a tough, political edge to his comedy, changing the landscape forever

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The history of libraries from before stone tablets, to printed books

Tue, 19 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Stuart Kells' life as a bibliophile began with one ancient, leather-bound, blue book ABC - Conversations

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Treasures, trash and synchronicity: adventures in archaeology

Mon, 18 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Nicholson Museum curator Jamie Fraser unwinds the stories of its treasures, including a rare, Egyptian temple priestess mummy

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The Antarctic voyage which helped end a decade of silence

Fri, 15 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

A rare vocal condition left Robyn Mundy unable to speak for more than a decade

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Utopia, now? A radical rethinking of work, wealth and freedom

Thu, 14 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Author Rutger Bregman on a philosophy gaining broader support: universal basic income

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Engineering a way to find meaningful work for young people

Wed, 13 Sep 2017 13:00:00 +1000

Bill Lawson applies an engineer's mind to solving social problems Bill Lawson

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The girl from Mount Druitt who became a remarkable comedy voice

Tue, 12 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Playwright Nakkiah Lui was given a crucial early piece of advice: when telling stories, always try to offend your mother

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How the Safe Schools Program began an ideological firestorm

Mon, 11 Sep 2017 13:00:00 +1000

Benjamin Law looks behind the media scandal which engulfed an Australian anti-bullying program

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The call of the road: how one woman took on the trucking world

Fri, 08 Sep 2017 13:00:00 +1000

Heather Jones heads her own transport company, and still enjoys driving road trains in her home state of WA (R) Heather Jones

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Why a Buddhist nun found her way to death row

Thu, 07 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

In 1977 Australian Robina Courtin became one of the first westerners to be ordained a Buddhist nun. Then she founded the Liberation Prison Project

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From combat wounds, to shark attacks, to human error: a life in emergency medicine

Wed, 06 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Alan Turner's life in emergency medicine has seen him spend much of his life in war zones, and remote Australia

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The boy who grew up on a junk and became a theatrical powerhouse

Tue, 05 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

When Scott Rankin was a child he slept on a Chinese junk moored in Sydney's Lane Cove River, until the day six squad cars of police arrived

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Tim Rogers and his struggles to quell his mind

Mon, 04 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

The frontman of You Am I on his life in music, his Kalgoorlie childhood, and his battles with anxiety

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Bernie McKay helped Australia kick its smoking habit

Fri, 01 Sep 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Bernie is the man behind several massively influential public health campaigns, including 'Quit for Life', and AIDS awareness (R)

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Robert Fisk: life as a war correspondent

Thu, 31 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Robert Fisk has spent his career reporting from war zones and interviewed one of the world's most infamous terrorists, Osama Bin Laden.

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How a former drinking mate was unmasked as serial murderer

Wed, 30 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

When Campbell McConachie befriended a man called Lindsey Rose at a Sydney pub, he didn't know Lindsey had already killed several people

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The sexcapades and murders of the emperor Nero

Tue, 29 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Shushma Malik on Emperor Nero's decadence, destruction and debauchery (R)

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The stories told to Lindy Chamberlain, in more than 20,000 letters

Mon, 28 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Alana Valentine on Lindy's letters of blame, hate and apology Alana Valentine

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What is fake news? Trump, Pizzagate and dumpsters on fire

Fri, 25 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Buzzfeed's Craig Silverman explains where fake news comes from, who benefits, and how the average person might tell genuine news from fake

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The rise and fall of the East India Company

Thu, 24 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

How a company legally formed a transcontinental private empire

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Bad Behaviour: memories of bullying and boarding school

Wed, 23 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

How a 14 year old girl found herself on both sides of bullying Rebecca Starford

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The cost of denying death

Tue, 22 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Intensive care specialist Ken Hillman questions the use of life-prolonging treatments in acute hospital settings

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After total amnesia, rebuilding an identity

Mon, 21 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Robyn Pratt woke up in hospital after an operation, with no idea who she was (R)

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The aerial view: how Angus Houston took to the skies

Fri, 18 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Air Chief Marshal Sir Angus Houston nearly missed out on a career in the military

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Hannah Kent and the Good People of Ireland

Thu, 17 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

The fairies of Ireland's folk culture were capricious twilight creatures who could bestow favour or grave misfortune (R)

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The snake man of La Perouse

Wed, 16 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

John Cann's family performed snake shows in Sydney for almost a century (R)

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The pirates of Somalia

Tue, 15 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Sarah Percy on how piracy has become a lucrative business, funded by the insurance designed to protects ships against it

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Lily Brett's portrait of New York

Mon, 14 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

A former Melbournian reflects on the characters and charms of her adopted city (R) Lily Brett

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A history of two rascals: Prince Alfred and his assassin

Fri, 11 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

The attempted assassination of Queen Victoria’s son, at a picnic in 19th Century Sydney

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Listening to trees: nature's magnificent networkers

Thu, 10 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

How biologist David George Haskell discovered the unique songs of trees, and the way they interconnect

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The scorpion, the earth's most ancient, deadly creature

Wed, 09 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Historian Louise Pryke reveals the mysteries of the scorpion, an exceptional creature (R)

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Richard Roxburgh: a resume of rogues

Tue, 08 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

One of Australia's most recognisable actors, aka Rake's Cleaver Greene, reflects on his life on and off stage and screen

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Making a good life in the aftermath of violence: Miroslav Volf

Mon, 07 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Growing up as a Pentecostal Christian in communist Yugoslavia, Miroslav experienced deep marginalisation (R)

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John Maclean's 25-year journey to walk again

Fri, 04 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

As a young man John was left an 'incomplete paraplegic'. He spent 25 years achieving extreme physical feats, before finally walking again (R)

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Being raised as 'daughter number five' shaped Mei Fong's life

Thu, 03 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

As the fifth girl in a Chinese-Malaysian family, Mei was given a freedom not granted to her sisters. She used it to become an internationally respected writer and journalist

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How the daughter of a Hindu brain surgeon made her mark on Guantanamo Bay

Wed, 02 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Shankari Chandran grew up watching her father operate on the brain. But rather than following her parents into medicine, she chose an unexpected path

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How an expedition to a Eastern Antarctica turned into a fight for survival

Tue, 01 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +1000

Scientist Chris Turney mounted a major expedition to Antarctica in 2013. Within months, extreme weather saw 52 people trapped, on a ship pinned in the sea ice

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