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Listed under:  Language  >  Text types  >  Persuasive texts  >  Literary criticism  >  Reviewing (Texts)
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A moral minefield: Christos Tsiolkas's 'The Slap'

'The Slap', a novel from Australian author Christos Tsiolkas, created plenty of controversy when it was published. Why is it that some novels seem to stir people up more than others? Learn how the novel affected a group of panel members discussing popular Australian books.

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The lost and the missing at Hanging Rock

Joan Lindsay's 'Picnic at Hanging Rock' is often considered a classic of Australian literature. But what makes it so well-regarded? And does everyone agree? Join in this panel discussion and explore why one person's literary masterpiece is another's turgid pot-boiler.

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Rethinking drinking alcohol

'High Sobriety', a book that journalist Jill Stark wrote about her experiences after deciding to stop drinking, provoked a lively discussion on the First Tuesday Book Club. All panellists were affected by the work. Have any books changed your life or made you question your beliefs and behaviour?

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Memory in 'My Place'

Sally Morgan's autobiography, 'My Place', recounts the experiences of the author, her mother and her grandmother. Why do the panellists in this video think it is such an important book? What issues does it address?

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Portraying the Exxon Valdez oil spill, 19 years on

Ever heard the phrase 'there are two sides to every story'? While some texts might seem to present both sides of the story, close analysis can often reveal otherwise. This clip from Foreign Correspondent explores some arguments about the after-effects of one of the world's worst oil-spills. The spill occurred in 1989 when ...

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Postcard from Uluru

Many texts explore the connection people have to a particular place. In this clip, explore the beauty and majesty of Uluru and learn about the significance this sacred place holds for many Australians. Notice how visual language can be used to reinforce these ideas.

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Debating Vietnam: using counter-arguments

Imagine agreeing with your opponent in a debate. How could that possibly help your argument? Many successful speakers, however, realise that concession is an important persuasive technique. In this clip, explore how two speakers discussing the effectiveness of Vietnam War protest marches both use concession to improve their ...

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Objectivity in the media - thinking about Twitter

Imagine a platform where everybody has the opportunity to voice their opinions publicly. That would be pretty democratic, right? This is one of the purposes of Twitter. However, Twitter doesn't always give an accurate indication of public opinion. Explore how this clip encourages viewers to think about Twitter in a particular way.

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John le Carré: early influences

How do writers of spy novels find inspiration? Where do they learn about the people and places that feature in their books? Listen to acclaimed author John le Carré explain how he draws upon his childhood, family and his work with the British secret service to inspire and inform his novels.

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Books that changed the world: 'Silent Spring'

Have you ever thought that a book could be so powerful that it could change the world? Discover how the biologist Rachel Carson's book 'Silent Spring' led to the banning of toxic agricultural chemicals and launched the modern environment movement.

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Exploring dystopian fiction

Imagine a future where Australia has been taken over by an invading force and everybody is interned in prison camps, or a world where corporations control our every move. These are scenarios imagined by two Australian authors, John Marsden and Max Barry. In this clip, explore reasons why they believe these situations might ...

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Jane Eyre: who is Bertha Mason?

What do Jane Eyre and Bertha Mason have in common? In what ways are they different? How do you react to Bertha's character? Listen carefully as Professor John Bowen shares his thoughts about the significance of Bertha in Charlotte Bronte's classic novel. This clip is one in a series of four.

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What's the best age to discover a book?

Do you think there is a best age at which you discover a book? Is a book you love as a young adult likely to remain a favourite for the rest of your life? Listen to a panel of authors, literary critics and a publisher discuss when a book is most likely to make a lasting impression on the reader.

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Wuthering Heights: violence and cruelty

Why might Emily Bronte have included numerous instances of cruelty in Wuthering Heights? Listen as John Bowen, Professor of Nineteeth-century Literature, considers the reasons behind the brutality in the novel. This clip is one in a series of four from the British Library.

Online

Storytelling

Oral histories, myths, legends, folk tales, fairy tales, Aussie yarns and interactive digital stories. Storytelling traditions stretch throughout time.

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Writing from the fringe

Imagine a mysterious island with a wild, rugged landscape and a history of tragedy and hardship. But it is also an island of unrivalled beauty with a purity of nature rarely found today. Sound like something out of a novel? Well, it's Tasmania and it has inspired the writing of many novels, not the least of which are those ...

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The serious side of comics

Poetry, plays, novels � and comic books? In the past, writers and illustrators of graphic novels have struggled to have their work taken seriously. More recently, the tides might just have turned. Judge for yourself whether this form of text deserves a little more respect than it's been getting. This clip is one in a series ...

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Just big kids? Why adults are reading YA fiction

The Young Adult, or YA, publishing market might be huge, but not all readers of YA books are teenagers. Perhaps surprisingly, increasing numbers of adults are choosing to read books written for the YA market. Join in this panel discussion as four YA authors discuss the reasons why their books are being picked up by adult readers.

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Should some YA novels be banned?

Ever since Mark Twain's 'Adventures of Huckleberry Finn' was published in 1884, books for teenagers have come under close scrutiny by adults concerned about their appropriateness for younger audiences. Why are some adults so worried about what teenagers read? Are they right to be concerned? Explore the tricky topic of censorship ...

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The universality of Shakespeare

Have you ever tried to read Shakespeare or watched one of his plays or a movie based on one? Most people find Shakespeare hard work because the English language has changed so much since the 16th and 17th centuries in which he worked. Yet many of those who persist with Shakespeare see him as the greatest of all writers. ...