The University of Newcastle, Australia

Discover the stories behind the stories: Newcastle Writers Festival 2020

Friday, 6 March 2020

With another amazing line up of authors, academics, commentators and journalists, including a wealth from our University, tickets to this year’s Newcastle Writers Festival, on April 3-5, will be in hot demand!

Newcastle writers festival logo

In December 2019, our University signed a formal sponsorship and three-year partnership agreement with the Festival; this honours our long relationship and recognises us as a major ‘Proud Founding Sponsor’ in all Festival marketing and collateral.

“This formal partnership cements our relationship with the Newcastle Writers Festival and highlights our work to support culture, arts and writing in our wider communities’,” said Professor Catharine Coleborne, Head of the School of Humanities and Social Science.

“Our doctoral students and academic staff are very excited to again present, host sessions and contribute to the important themes of the Festival in 2020, including environmental writing, thinking about sexual violence, New Newcastle Writing, poetry and history.”

The following sessions will be delivered and/or hosted by members of the School of Humanities and Social Science.

Saturday 4 April

Sunday 5 April

  • 11.30am - 12.30pm 'Celebrating Les Murray' hosted by Ed Wright
  • 11.30am - 12.30pm 'Sally Rugg on people power' hosted by Marguerite Johnson
  • 11.30am - 12.30pm 'Chris Fleming on addiction' hosted by Michael Sala
  • 11.30am - 12.30pm 'Women of words' with Trisha Pender
  • 1.30 - 2.30pm 'Jane Gilmore on fixing the headlines' hosted by Trisha Pender
  • 3 - 4pm 'Barbara Heaton on working class hero Jim Comerford' hosted by Nancy Cushing

At the launch of the Festival Program, Festival Director Rosemarie Milsom mentioned that historical writing was an especially rich part of the events and sessions in 2020. Pro Vice-Chancellor of the Faculty of Education and Arts, Professor John Fischetti, commented in his speech that the Festival was as much for ‘readers’ as it was for writers, and spoke of the enormous power of writing to change lives around the world through words, not only as part of education but also in our everyday thirst for knowledge and meaning.

Humanities academics will present as part of the New Thinking Series, with HASS postgraduate research students also involved in masterclasses and sessions, and Work-Integrated Learning opportunities for students across the University’s Faculty of Education and Arts.

“The University is thrilled to partner with the Newcastle Writers Festival to bring the HSC English day to high school students in the Hunter region,” said Associate Professor of English and Creative Writing, Patricia Pender.

“Previously, schools needed to travel down to Sydney for lectures like this, with the result that many in our area simply missed out."

"This year they will be able to benefit from the expertise of specialists on Shakespeare, Film, Modern Literature, and Contemporary Poetry from their local University. It’s a great opportunity for all of us.”

To explore the 2020 program, click here. To find out more about the HSC Program, click here.

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