Julian Assange Headlines Festival Of Dangerous Ideas

The Sydney Opera House today unveiled the full program for The Festival Of Dangerous Ideas and promises a provocative, boundary-pushing lineup of international and local speakers including “most dangerous man in the world” Julian Assange.

The Australian-born editor of WikiLeaks is currently under house arrest in London awaiting the outcome of his appeal against extradition to Sweden to face sexual assault charges, so whether or not he will actually be inside the hallowed halls of the Sydney Opera House remains to be seen. Festival organisers promise that If Assange is unable to travel he will speak via video link on the topic “Wikileaks has not gone far enough” on 30 September.

Other speakers include American novelist and outspoken vegetarian Jonathan Safran Foer, former speechwriter to President George W. Bush Marc Thiessen, Secretary-general of Amnesty International Salil Shetty and best selling author Alexander McCall-Smith, as well as locals like Cheryl Kernot, Philip Nitschke and Dick Smith.

Among the themes up for discussion are Footballers are Barbarians not role models; Psychopaths Make the World Go Around; Ecstasy is No More Dangerous Than Horse-riding; All Women are Sluts; Australia is a third-rate country; and Let Us Be Realists and Demand the Impossible: Communism.

Fence-sitting not recommended.

Festival Of Dangerous Ideas:
Saturday 1 October- Sunday 2 October
Sydney Opera House, various venues
Bookings: (02) 9250 7777 or online at sydneyoperahouse.com

Tickets for Festival of Dangerous Ideas 2011 go on sale on Monday 8 August.
Full program available at www.sydneyoperahouse.com/festivalofdangerousideas