On being Australian

Age columnist and author Martin Flanagan this week delivered a very personal lecture at the University of Portland in Oregon. This is an edited transcript.

Source: On being Australian

I wanted to post this for posterity. I think this is an outstanding article by a writer who has been producing insightful, sensitive and heartfelt pieces for many years now. Unlike most journo’s, he get’s beneath the surface of things. He has a very keen and generous eye, and an open heart.

This piece, about being Australian, takes on a tough subject. What is it to be Australian? I often feel that is something that is changing all the time. Perhaps because Flanagan and I are of the same general vintage (I’m younger by about 10 years) I found that much of what he has expressed here accords with my experience. We even have similar experiences of travel if this piece is anything to go by.

I think he’s a great journalist and a very good Australian. He comes from a good place. His brother, incidentally, is the outstanding author Richard Flanagan – so it’s in the blood.


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