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Agony of a new world order

Have you heard of the Mujahideen and what they stand for? Listen as Akram Azimi, the 2013 Young Australian of the Year, recounts a story that contributed to his family's decision to leave Afghanistan. This audio clip from Radio National's Conversations with Richard Fidler is the second in a series of eight.

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The creation of Trowenna

Different cultures around the world have their own creation stories, explaining how this planet and all the places on it were formed. These stories can tell us much about what is important to each culture. This story, from the Nuenonne people of Bruny Island, explains how Tasmania, known to them as Trowenna, was formed.

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Comparing the book and the film of 'The Hobbit'

Have you ever read a book and then seen the film version of it? Did you think it was well done or could it have been done differently? In this panel interview presented by Michael Cathcart, academics Mark Atherton and Lynette Porter talk about the things that influenced J.R.R. Tolkien in writing 'The Hobbit'. They also ...

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Kokoda campaign, 1942

Have you ever heard of the Kokoda Trail? This was the site of one of Australia's most famous campaigns in World War II, one that helped to define the national character. From July to November 1942, this rugged jungle trail saw some of the most fiercely contested battles for territory between the Australians and the Japanese. ...

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William Cuffay: 'Fellow slaves'

How did William Cuffay's link with slavery help him become such an influential campaigner for civil rights? This extract from a radio program 'The Isle of Denial: William Cuffay in Van Diemen's Land' explores similarities between convict transportation and slavery and the conditions of the British working class.

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William Cuffay: Chartist celebrity

Who was William Cuffay, and why did he frighten the British government so much? This extract from a radio program 'The Isle of Denial: William Cuffay in Van Diemen's Land' tells the story of Chartist leader William Cuffay. It focuses on Cuffay's transportation to Australia and how he continued his political activities once ...

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Inspirational Teens

Have you ever made a big contribution to your local community? Heywire is a national competition that assists young people to make a difference in rural communities. Bridie Johnstone from Woodend, Victoria, was a finalist of the 2012 Heywire storytelling competition for young people. Listen to how she is using music to ...

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Chifley's 'Light on the Hill' speech, 1949

This audio clip presents and examines Prime Minister Ben Chifley's 'Light on the Hill' speech, which was delivered to NSW Labor Party members in 1949. Listen to author Michael Fullilove explain why the 'Light on the Hill' phrase has become so powerful in Australian politics. The speech in the recording is performed by an actor.

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Gender convergence in teenager swearing

Explore how the use of swearing by teenagers is changing. Maria Zijlstra talks to Mike Thelwall, Professor of Information Science at the University of Wolverhampton, about the upsurge in swearing on social networking sites, especially among girls. He contends that, in the UK in particular, swearing is losing its shock value ...

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Seeing more clearly from further away

Imagine coming from a regional community and being whisked away to a huge international conference in Denmark. Samantha Fielder's Heywire audio story reveals how this change in context encouraged her to reflect on her community and its approach to environmental issues. Could you write or record a story about yourself and/or ...

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Australian businesses generating renewable energy

Imagine how much Australia could reduce its carbon emissions if every business generated its own electricity from renewable energy sources. It's now possible for large and small businesses to do just that. In this audio file, listen to how Elgo Estate wines reduced carbon emissions by installing a wind turbine, even generating ...

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Spanning the generations in an unlikely friendship

Do you think strangers with 60 years of age between them can become friends? When eighteen, George Baker found out that they can when he befriended Geoff, a man in his eighties. Could you write or record a story about yourself and/or your community? The ABC's Heywire competition calls for stories from 16-22-year-olds in ...

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Pink suits and circus wagons in 'The Great Gatsby'

Part of the success of F Scott Fitzgerald's novel 'The Great Gatsby' is the intriguing title character, Jay Gatsby. In this audio clip, explore the effect that Fitzgerald's skilfully-constructed character has on those who read the novel. Find out what makes this character so intriguing.

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Sporting Volunteers

Sport is a way of life for many Australians. Often all we see are the players on the field, but have you ever thought about what is involved behind the scenes? Jarvis Holt from Kurraca, Victoria, was a finalist of the 2012 Heywire storytelling competition for young people. Listen as he explores the whole army of people ...

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Evolving English: the role of social media

How many times have you heard teenagers berated for using the term 'like'? Yet this term has existed at least since 1586 when the term, 'Yon man is like out of his mind' was written into history. The truth is, our language is constantly evolving, with new words added, others dying off and some resurfacing again. In this ...

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Convict life in The Rocks, Sydney

Discover in this audio file what life was like for the convicts who first arrived in Sydney. Associate Professor Grace Karskens explains that, contrary to popular opinion, most convicts were not confined to gaol or work gangs. Many convicts settled in the Rocks area in their own houses and were able to conduct a normal ...

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Paul Hogan and Australian slang

Listen to Australian comic actor Paul Hogan talk to reporters in February 1987 about the Oscars and his role as Mick Dundee in the film 'Crocodile Dundee' (1986). Hogan played a laid-back outback survivalist in this hugely successful film, which is known for its use of Australian slang. Take note of Hogan's own use of Australian ...

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Hip hop against waste dump

Many hip hop artists have expressed concerns about the world through their music. The Northern Territory's Kylie Sambo is no exception. Listen to her protest against the construction of a nuclear waste dump on her people's lands in Muckaty, near Tennant Creek. Could you write or record a story about yourself and/or your ...

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BHP and Broken Hill

Find out about the humble beginnings of the giant company BHP in the town of Broken Hill. Brian Tonkin, Archives Officer with the Broken Hill City Library, starts this detailed audio tour at the BHP chimney, which is all that remains of the original BHP building. He explains the importance of the company to the development ...

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A view of Australia's identity and immigration

How have the convict era and immigration influenced Australia's view of itself? In this clip from an audio interview, journalist Geraldine Doogue interviews historian John Hirst. They discuss his views about convict heritage, national character, the White Australia policy, racism, and recent immigration, refugee and and ...