The Disneyfied version of Bambi has eclipsed the original story. But it is the 1923 Austrian novel that inspires and terrifies bestselling author Sarah Bakewell (At the Existentialist Cafe). It has been interpreted as a defence of animal rights, an allegory of the Jewish-European experience, a coming-of-age tale, and even a Kafkaesque parable. Hear Bakewell talk about these afterlives, what we look for in stories, and why we change them.

Supported by the University of Sydney.

Sarah Bakewell (International)

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Sarah Bakewell is the author of bestselling works of biography and cultural history, including How to Live: A Life of Montaigne, which won the Duff Cooper Prize for Non-Fiction, and the National Books Critics Circle Award for Biography. It was also shortlisted for the Costa Biography Award. Her latest book, At the Existentialist Café, is a spirited account of one of the twentieth century’s major intellectual movements and the revolutionary thinkers who came to shape it. Weaving biography and philosophy into an epic story of passionate encounters—fights, love affairs, mentorships, rebellions, and long partnerships—this is a vital investigation into what the existentialists have to offer us today. It was selected as one of the New York Times' Ten Best Books of the Year. Sarah has previously worked as worked as a bookseller, curator, and received a postgraduate degree in Artificial Intelligence.

Juanita Ruys (Australian)

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Juanita Feros Ruys is the director of the University of Sydney Node of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions. She is a senior research fellow in the Medieval and Early Modern Centre and the author of Demons in the Middle Ages.