Julia Zemiro’s Home Delivery: March 9

Mr Hypotheticals himself, Geoffrey Robertson, is this week's guest on Home Delivery.


Mr Hypotheticals himself, Geoffrey Robertson, is this week’s guest on Julia Zemiro’s Home Delivery.

Geoffrey Robertson emerged from the suburbs of North West Sydney to forge a stellar legal career, with clients such as the Sex Pistols, Salman Rushdie and Julian Assange and fighting to prosecute world leaders accused of crimes against humanity.

He takes Julia back to Eastwood, and the small suburban house in which he grew up, and talks of an idyllic childhood playing in the half-acre backblock and first becoming aware of injustice by listening to the tennis on ABC radio.

As they visit Epping Boys High he describes his awkwardness as a teenager, his voracious appetite for English and History, and his discovery that State school students were being disadvantaged by baffling government policy.

But it was at Sydney University, that he found his political voice and the power of the law. As they stroll the grounds, he tells of being president of the Student Representative Council in the volatile times of conscription, Vietnam and Indigenous rights.

He discusses how Australia has influenced him (“I’m an ex-pat but not an ex-patriot”) and Julia asks him about accusations of arrogance.

We meet his university friend and former NSW politician, Meredith Burgmann, whom he defended after she was arrested and jailed for invading a Springboks Rugby International to protest against Apartheid. They discuss the changing nature of activism.

Geoffrey muses on how his workload has affected his private life, his defense of cause celebrés, and the nature of chance and circumstance.

8pm Wednesday on ABC.

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