Tony Birch on love, grief, trauma and tenacity in "The White Girl"

Thursday 11 July 2019

Tony Birch

In The White Girl, Tony Birch tells the story of Odette Brown raising her granddaughter Sissy on the fringes of a small country town. When the menacing Sergeant Lowe arrives, any freedom that Odette and Sissy enjoy comes under grave threat.

I would hope that the readers say ‘these are mighty people, these are great people in this book’ and maybe they’ll think of others outside the book that are equally mighty people.

For our latest podcast episode, Tony Birch spoke with Laura La Rosa about domesticity, love, trauma, grief, and some of the true stories of the Stolen Generation that informed The White Girl. The conversation was recorded live at Richmond Library on Wednesday 12 June 2019.

Tony Birch is the author of Ghost River, which won the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Indigenous Writing and Blood, which was shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Award. He is also the author of Shadowboxing and three short story collections: Father’s Day, The Promise and Common People. In 2017 he was awarded the Patrick White Literary Award. Tony is a frequent contributor to ABC local and national radio and a regular guest at writers’ festivals. He lives in Melbourne and is a Senior Research Fellow at Victoria University.

Laura La Rosa is a proud Darug woman, originally from Western Sydney, now living on Wurundjeri land. She is the founder of creative collective, Woolf Communications, as well as a writer, producer, and graphic designer. Passionate about grassroots collectivism and storytelling, Laura's work is focused on fostering disruptive discourse and the elevation of vital voices through various mediums. A dabbling columnist, Laura has appeared in The Age, the Sydney Morning Herald, The Real, and Eureka Street.


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