The Friends of the NFSA present the inaugural Rod Wallace Lecture, delivered by Kim Williams AM.
At the NFSA in November 2022, prominent media executive and public policy commentator Kim Williams AM gave a lecture entitled 'Why we bother: Reflections on the duty of care to Australians’ creativity'.
Read an excerpt below and view the lecture in full on the Friends of the NFSA YouTube channel.
I am sure we all agree that our nation has many diverse identities allied with unifying themes that are central to the sometimes, but by no means always, shared perception as to what it is to be an Australian. Those views have evolved in substantial measure from the impact of our literature and art; from our numerous and varied sources of political and social leadership; but also and overwhelmingly in my view, from the strong impact of cinema, music and the print and electronic media.
Film, television and radio had an important role in imbuing Australians with our sense of self-reliance, reinforcing our quirky humour matched with a projection of an uncanny optimism – each of which I would describe as core to the national personality. They also have reflected that sense of egalitarian idealism which is close to the heart of many Australians’ imagined sense of self, albeit at marked divergence from the lived reality.
Narratives matter in nation building; they provide a core to the ideals that drive us. Storytelling is central to the growth and development of all societies and nations. Popular narratives make much of that come together within any developed society and are reflected in the quality of the confidence and content in the strands of social and political discourse in all cultures. So let me review some of that work and why it matters, and why we must stand up affirmatively for institutional purpose and support, demanding that duty of care is properly sustained.
View the rest of the lecture in full on the Friends of the NFSA YouTube channel.
Narratives matter in nation building; they provide a core to the ideals that drive us. Storytelling is central to the growth and development of all societies and nations.
During 32 years of service at the National Library of Australia (1945–1977) as an innovator, advocate and mentor, Roderick Wallace AM oversaw the development of its special collections, including film, music and sound recordings.
He laid the foundations that would enable the eventual creation of the NFSA as a separate institution in 1984. The Friends of the NFSA have named this lecture series in his honour, to commemorate his pioneering achievement.
For further information about the Friends of the NFSA, visit their website.