Benjamin Law welcomes some of the Festival’s most celebrated guests in a not-to-be-missed discussion about queer literary heroes. From The Price of Salt, to Harry Potter, to Winnie the Pooh, Patrick Abboud, Ivan Coyote, Anton Enus, Michael Farrell, Melissa Hardie, C.S. Pacat and Alison Whittaker talk about the texts that influenced them – both the overtly gay and the implicitly queer. They share which books they looked to for guidance and the characters they identified with, or those whose mere existence provided comfort – when they were first identifying as queer. Guests will come equipped with endorsements, recommendations and surprises.

Supported by the University of Sydney.

Please note: due to unforeseen circumstances, Eamon Flack will no longer be appearing at this event. 

Alison Whittaker (Australian)

Alison Whittaker

Alison Whittaker is a Gomeroi poet, essayist and legal scholar. She is a Research Fellow at the Jumbunna Institute. In 2017–18, Alison was a Fulbright scholar at Harvard Law School where she was named Dean’s Scholar in Race, Gender and Criminal Law. Her second book Blakwork was shortlisted for the 2019 Prime Minister's Literary Award. Her most recent book, Fire Front, is an anthology of, and about, First Nations published poetry.

Anton Enus (Australian)

Anton Enus

Anton Enus has been a broadcast journalist for more than 35 years, working initially in his native South Africa during the apartheid era and in the transition to democracy. For the past 20 years he’s been a news presenter for SBS World News. He has also been an ambassador for Bowel Cancer Australia since 2014 and advocates strongly on behalf of the national bowel cancer screening program.

Patrick Abboud (Australian)

Patrick Abboud

Patrick Abboud is a Walkley nominated and multi-award-winning journalist, TV presenter and documentary maker. He’s currently an investigative reporter for The Project on Network Ten, and directs interactive documentary projects in collaboration with SBS Digital Labs and Google Creative Labs. Pat is the recipient of the 2020 Jesse Cox Fellowship and is working on a multi-platform true crime series for release in 2021. Pat founded SBS TV’s The Feed. His innovative long-form storytelling has been described as "must watch TV" (Guardian Australia) and as "documentaries every Australian needs to see" (news.com.au). Pat has also co-hosted and directed content for the SBS Mardi Gras television broadcast. His pop culture interview series #PatChat has clocked up more than 30 million views across social media. Cosmopolitan named Pat one of the 50 most influential LGBTQI+ voices in 2017.

Benjamin Law (Australian)

Benjamin Law

Benjamin Law is a journalist, columnist, TV screenwriter and author of The Family Law, Gaysia: Adventures in the Queer East and Quarterly Essay 67: Moral Panic 101. The Family Law is also an award-winning TV series for SBS which Benjamin created and co-wrote over three seasons. His debut stageplay Torch the Place premiered at Melbourne Theatre Company earlier this year.