Fourth Town Hall – Book Club Special

On Tuesday 24 November 2020 we were joined by two inspiring local authors, Marian Wilkinson and Sarah Wilson to facilitate a discussion about their new books and how we can learn from their insights going forward into 2021.

This was a special “in person” and online event to celebrate the start of the holiday season.

Both books are available to purchase prior to the event and also at the event itself.

The authors will be happy to sign your copies at the event.

Both books would make great seasonal gifts!

Marian Wilkinson

Marian Wilkinson is a multi-award-winning journalist with a career that has spanned radio, television and print.

She has covered politics, national security, refugee issues and climate change as well as serving as a foreign correspondent in Washington, DC for the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age. She was a deputy editor of the Sydney Morning Herald, executive producer of the ABC’s Four Corners program and a senior reporter with Four Corners.

As environment editor for the Sydney Morning Herald, she reported on the rapid melt of Arctic sea ice for a joint Four Corners Sydney Morning Herald production that won a Walkley Award for journalism and the Australian Museum’s Eureka prize for environmental journalism. She also covered the UN climate conferences in Bali and Copenhagen.

As a member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), she reported on the Panama Papers and the Paradise Papers for Four Corners.

She has written several books, including the political biography The Fixer, on former Labor powerbroker Graham Richardson, and Dark Victory, on Australia’s response to asylum seekers, which she co-authored with David Marr.

In 2018 she was inducted into the Australian Media Hall of Fame.

Marian’s latest book, The Carbon Club looks at how a network of influential climate sceptics, politicians and business leaders fought to control Australia’s climate policy. As the climate crisis threatens more extreme bushfire seasons, droughts and floods, many Australians are demanding their leaders answer the question: ‘Why didn’t you do something?’

The Carbon Club reveals the truth behind Australia’s two decades of climate inaction. It’s the story of how a loose confederation of influential climate-science sceptics, politicians and business leaders sought to control Australia’s response to the climate crisis. They shared a fear that dealing with climate change would undermine the nation’s wealth, jobs and competitive advantage – and the power of the carbon club.

Central to their strategy was an international campaign to undermine climate science and the urgency of the climate crisis. The more the climate science was questioned, the more politicians lost the imperative to act. The sustained success of the carbon club over two decades explains why Australian governments failed to deal with the challenge of climate change. But at what cost to us and the next generation?

One of Australia’s most respected investigative journalists, Marian Wilkinson has tracked the rise and rise of Australia’s carbon club in brilliant detail, with extraordinary access to key players on all sides. The result is a book that is both essential and disturbing reading.

Sarah Wilson

Sarah Wilson is the author of the New York Times bestsellers first, we make the beast beautiful: a new story about anxiety, which Mark Manson described as ‘the best book on living with anxiety that I’ve ever read’, and I Quit Sugar, along with eleven cookbooks that have been published in fifty-two countries.

Previously, she was editor of Cosmopolitan Australia, host of MasterChef Australia and founder of iquitsugar.com, an 8-week program that has seen millions worldwide break their sugar addiction. In May 2018, Sarah committed to giving all proceeds from the business to charity. She now builds and enables charity projects that engage humans with one another, and campaigns on mental health, consumerism, racial injustice, and climate issues. Sarah lives in Sydney, is an obsessive hiker and spent eight years travelling the world with one bag.

Will you sleep through the revolution? Or do you want to wake up and reclaim your one wild and precious life?

We live in truly overwhelming times. The climate crisis, political polarisation, racial injustice and coronavirus have left many of us in a state of spiritual PTSD. We have retreated, morally and psychologically; we are experiencing a crisis of disconnection – from one another, from our true values, from joy, and from life as we feel we are meant to be living it.

Sarah Wilson argues that this sense of despair and disconnection is ironically what unites us – that deep down, we are all feeling that same itch for a new way of living. this one wild and precious life opens our eyes to how we got here and offers a radically hopeful path forward. Drawing on science, literature, philosophy, the wisdom of some of the world’s leading experts, and her personal journey, Wilson weaves a one-of-a-kind narrative that lights the way back to the life we love. En route, she leads us through a series of ‘wildly awake’ and joyful practices for reconnecting again that include:

 Go to your edge. Do what scares you and embrace discomfort daily. Use it to grow into your Big Life.
– #buylesslivemore. Break the cycle of mindless consumption and get light with your life.
– Become a soul nerd. Embrace poetry, deep reading, art, and classical music to light up your intellect.
– Get ‘full-fat spiritual’. How to have an active practice – beyond the ‘lite’ ‘rainbows and unicorns’ – and use it to change the world.
– Hike. Just hike. Walking in nature reconnects us with ourselves, and with our true purpose.
– Practise wild activism. If you can get 3.5 per cent of a population to participate in sustained, non-violent protest, change happens. We create our better world.

The time has come to boldly, wildly, imagine better. We are being called upon, individually and as a society, to forge a new path and to find a new way of living. Will you join the journey?

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