Five phenomenal non-fiction writers come together to discuss why pervasive inequality is one of the great moral issues of our time – and what can be done to reverse growing societal divisions. Join Akala (Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire), Gabrielle Chan (Rusted Off: Why Country Australia is Fed Up), Beth Macy (Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America) and Rick Morton (One Hundred Years of Dirt) together with George Megalogenis as they consider why the fault lines appear to be widening at a time when our capacity to act with rationality and compassion has arguably never been more heightened.

Supported by the British Council.

Events in Bay 17 at Carriageworks are closed-captioned.

Rick Morton (Australian)

Rick Morton

Rick Morton is an award-winning journalist with The Australian and is the author of One Hundred Years of Dirt. It explores intergenerational trauma, poverty, addiction and mental health and the role of a mother who tried to love enough for the failures of everyone else around her. Originally from Queensland, Rick has worked in Sydney, Hobart, Melbourne and now Canberra as the social affairs writer for The Australian with a particular focus on the National Disability Insurance Scheme, aged care, the welfare system, religion and employment services. Rick is the winner of the 2017 Kennedy Award for Outstanding Columnist. One Hundred Years of Dirt was longlisted for the 2018 Walkley Book of the Year and was Highly Commended in the Victorian Premier's Literary Awards 2019.

Gabrielle Chan (Australian)

Gabrielle Chan

Gabrielle Chan has been a journalist for more than 30 years. She began covering politics for The Australian in NSW parliament during the 1990s and moved to the Canberra press gallery in 1995. Gabrielle has also worked at ABC radio, The Daily Telegraph, in local newspapers and politics. She has written and edited histories and biographies. Since 2013, she has worked for Guardian Australia as a political correspondent, Politics Live blogger and feature writer. Rusted Off: Why country Australia is fed up is her first book.

Beth Macy (International)

Beth Macy

Beth Macy is the author of the widely acclaimed and bestselling books Truevine and Factory Man. Based in Roanoke, Virginia for three decades, her reporting has won more than a dozen national awards, including a Nieman Fellowship for Journalism at Harvard and J. Anthony Lukas prize from Columbia University. Her latest book is Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors and the Drug Company that Addicted America. Described as "a harrowing, deeply compassionate dispatch from the heart of a national emergency" by the New York Times, this is the only book to fully chart the devastating opioid crisis in America from a bestselling author and journalist who has lived through it. An instant bestseller, Dopesick was a Kirkus Prize finalist and was short-listed for the Andrew Carnegie Medal.

Akala (International)


Akala is a BAFTA and MOBO Award-winning hip-hop artist, writer and social entrepreneur, as well as the co-founder of The Hip-Hop Shakespeare Company. He is also known for his compelling lectures and journalism - he has written for The Guardian, Huffington Post and The Independent, and spoken for the Oxford Union and TEDx. His Sunday Times bestseller Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire is a searing polemic, covering everything from the police, education and identity to politics, sexual objectification and the far right, speaking directly to British denial and squeamishness when it comes to confronting issues of race and class that are at the heart of the legacy of Britain's racialised empire.

George Megalogenis (Australian)

George Megalogenis

George Megalogenis is an author and journalist with more than three decades' experience in the media. His book The Australian Moment won the 2013 Prime Minister's Literary Award for Non-fiction and the 2012 Walkley Award for Non-fiction, and formed the basis for his ABC documentary series Making Australia Great. George is also the author of Australia’s Second Chance, Balancing Act – Australia Between Recession and Renewal, The Longest Decade and Faultlines. His latest book is The Football Solution.