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    Book Launch: "Borderland" by Graham Akhurst - In Conversation with Professor Heidi Norman

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    Join our University of Technology (UTS)Β Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS)Β academicsΒ Graham AkhurstΒ (FASS Indigenous Australian Studies & Creative Writing) and Professor Heidi NormanΒ [FASS Associate Dean - Indigenous and Director of the Centre for the Advancement ofΒ Indigenous Knowledges (CAIK)] to celebrate the release of Graham's debut novelΒ Borderland,Β throughΒ UWA Publishing.

    BorderlandΒ follows Jono, a Brisbane-born Indigenous teenager lacking connection to his Country and community. When Jono and his best friend Lucia are presented the opportunity to intern with a documentary crew working to promote a large mining project in western Queensland, a conflict arises where Jono's intuition begins to clash with his desire, and he begins to experience visions of Wudun, a malevolent spirit from the Dreaming. What ensues is a heart-pounding gothic horror, following Jono on an epic quest to find himself.

    Graham Akhurst is an Aboriginal writer and academic from the Kokomini of Northern Queensland. He is currently a lecturer at UTS FASS, specialising in Indigenous Australian Studies and Creative Writing.Β BorderlandΒ is his first novel, though he has had creative works published in Kweli and J Journal for Fiction, the Australian Book Review, Cordite, VerityLa, Australian Poetry Journal, Artlines, Meanjin, and more. Graham was named the first Indigenous recipient of the Fulbright W.G Walker award as the highest-ranked postgraduate Australian applicant. His Fulbright award funded the completion of an MFA in Fiction from Hunter College (CUNY). Graham also completed an MPhil and a first-class honours degree both in Creative Writing from The University of Queensland. He currently lives and works on Gadigal Country in Sydney.Β His short story 'Staffy' was nominated for the 2022 PEN Dau Award, Best American Short Stories, O. Henry Prize, and Pushcart Prize.Β BorderlandΒ is his first novel. Graham Akhurst is represented by Danielle Binks and the Jacinta di Mase Agency.Β 

    Professor Heidi NormanΒ is a leading and award-winningΒ Australian researcher in the field of Aboriginal political history. Her research sits in the field of history and draws on the cognate disciplines anthropology, political-economy, cultural studies and political theory. She has made significant contributions to understandings Aboriginal social, cultural, economic and political history where she addresses questions of power in relation to Aboriginal citizens, the state and settler society and Aboriginal land justice. At the heart of her research, is her support for Aboriginal peoples’ rightful place in the nation, especially within political institutions, in society and the economy as landholders.Β She was a finalist for the UTS Chancellor's Medal for Research Excellence in 2021, awarded the UTS research excellence medal for collaboration (2015) , National Teaching Excellence Award for her work in Indigenous studies (2016), awarded the inaugural Gough Whitlam Research Fellowship (2017-18) and in 2018 she was announced as a 'Top 5' ABC humanities researcher. She is a descendant of the Gomeroi people from north western NSW. Over the last decade, she has won three ARC grants ($1.3million) and since 2016 she has won more than $400,000 in research consultancies from the NSW and Federal government.

    Find more about Graham and his new bookΒ from this interview that we published.

    Borderland will be on sale via Gleebooks at the event on the day.Β 

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