Annual Frank Sargeson Memorial Lecture

8 August 2017

Adam Dudding
2017's Lecture speaker Adam Dudding

Award-winning writer Adam Dudding will be presenting HEARTS AND LETTERS: How I decided to read 10,000 pages of literary chitchat from decades past, and am a better person for it at the 15th Annual Frank Sargeson Memorial Lecture, Tuesday 19 September.

The Annual Frank Sargeson Memorial Lecture, hosted jointly by the University of Waikato and the Friends of Hamilton Public Library, commemorates one of New Zealand's most important writers.

Frank Sargeson was born in London Street, Hamilton in 1903. He trained as a solicitor and travelled in Europe before settling in Takapuna on Auckland's North Shore, where he devoted his life to his writing, to his garden, and to mentoring younger writers: most famously, Janet Frame wrote her first novel Owls Do Cry in an army hut in his back garden. Sargeson was also a voluminous and diligent correspondent.

Although best known for his short stories, Sargeson was also a playwright and an acclaimed novelist. More than any other writer, he captured a working-class New Zealand vernacular, and the society that gave rise to it. His influential and quintessentially Kiwi work was published around the world, including in Britain, the United States and Australia.

In the 1970s, Sargeson completed a three-volume autobiography, now regarded as a classic of New Zealand literary non-fiction.

2017 Lecture: Adam Dudding

Join award-winning writer Adam Dudding for his lecture HEARTS AND LETTERS: How I decided to read 10,000 pages of literary chitchat from decades past, and am a better person for it. Dudding will discuss My Father’s Island, his memoir about his late father, literary editor Robin Dudding. My Father’s Island received the E.H. McCormick Best First Book Award for General Non-Fiction in the 2017 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards. Dudding works as a feature writer for Fairfax Media and lives in Mairangi Bay with his wife, two children and two dogs. Follow him on Twitter.

The 15th Annual Frank Sargeson Memorial Lecture

Tuesday 19 September 2017

Lecture begins 5.30pm. Light refreshments to follow, from 6.30pm

S.1.04, S Block, University of Waikato

Co-hosted by The Friends of Hamilton Library Association.

Speakers to date have included:

  • 2016 – Elizabeth Knox

Elizabeth Knox is the author of twelve novels, three autobiographical novellas and a collection of essays. Knox is best known for The Vintner’s Luck and The Dreamhunter Duet. She is an awardee of the Michael King Writer's Fellowship.

  • 2015 – Murray Edmond

Hamilton-born Murray Edmond is one of New Zealand’s best-known poets. Edmond has published 13 books of poems.

  • 2014 – Catherine Chidgey

Catherine Chidgey’s first three novels received local and international acclaim. After a thirteen-year hiatus, New Zealand-born Chidgey returned with her fourth novel, The Wish Child, leading her to receive the 2017 Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize.

  • 2013 – Professor Vincent O'Sullivan

Professor Vincent O'Sullivan, DCNZM, is a poet, short story writer, novelist, playwright, critic and editor. He was made a Distinguished Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2000.

  • 2012 – Dr John Newton

Poet, critic and literary historian Dr John Newton received high acclaim with his book, The Double Rainbow: James K. Baxter, Ngati Hau and the Jerusalem Commune. In 2014, Newton was the University of Waikato writer in residence.

  • 2011 – Ian Wedde

Ian Wedde, ONZM, is a poet, novelist, art curator, fiction writer and critic. Wedde was appointed an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2010.

  • 2010 – Owen Marshall

Owen Marshall, CNZM, is a leading New Zealand fiction writers. In 2012, Marshall became a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

  • 2009 – Dr Elizabeth Aitken Rose

Elizabeth Aitken Rose is the Head of the School of Architecture and Planning at The University of Auckland.