Tom Keneally calls him ‘dazzlingly elegant and perceptive,’ while Paul Keating will take to his grave a deep dislike of the man.
In this podcast, Don Watson discusses the wealth of ideas in his latest book, There it is Again: Collected Writings. From birds to love letters, imagined apologies, mind-numbing management-speak, Oscar Wilde, Anzac Day, strange people, and racehorses, in this collection of his writing Watson brings his distinctive voice and way of seeing to a host of deserving subjects.
Historian, essayist, speechwriter, humorist, anti-cant crusader – Watson has a gift for luring us to the nub of a matter; or at least to a new view of it, there to grin or grind our teeth at the spectacle.
Over the years Watson has written on politics and politicians in Australia and the USA, sport, nature, history, culture, crimes against speech, and military commemorations. At the heart of all of his work is the belief that, more than anything else – more than free markets or lifestyle choices – in a civilised society, words matter.
Duration: 31 mins.
About the author
Don Watson‘s books, articles and essays have been widely acclaimed. His bestselling titles include Recollections of a Bleeding Heart: Paul Keating Prime Minister, which won the Age Book of the Year and Non-Fiction Prizes, the Brisbane Courier Mail Book of the Year, the National Biography Award and the Australian Literary Studies Association’s Book of the Year, Death Sentence, which won the Australian Booksellers Association Book of the Year, Watson’s Dictionary of Weasel Words, and American Journeys, which won The Age Book of the Year and Non-Fiction Book of the Year, the inaugural Indie Award for Non-Fiction and the Walkley Non-Fiction Award.
In 2010 Don was awarded the Phillip Hodgins Memorial Medal for Australian Literature. Since 2003 his website weaselwords.com.au has been documenting the viral spread of management-speak and the decline of public language. His critically acclaimed 2014 book The Bush recently won the Indie Book of the Year and the NSW Premier’s Literary Award.