The Wheeler Centre

The Wheeler Centre is Melbourne’s home for smart, passionate and entertaining public talks on every topic.

Across 200+ events each year, and a unique collection of videos, podcasts and original writing, you’ll find some of our finest local and international writers and thinkers sharing their expertise, their imaginations and their ideas.

From inception, the idea grew with the passion, belief and support of the Victorian State Government, gaining unstoppable momentum. In 2008, when Melbourne was designated a UNESCO City of Literature, this heralded the establishment of the Centre of Books, Writing and Ideas – a vibrant new hub for a diverse range of literary and ideas based organisations and activities. The aim: to provide a home and important focal point for the conversations that matter to Victoria and indeed Australia. As the Centre itself took its physical shape within a newly renovated and dedicated wing of the State Library of Victoria, its position was secured ahead of the official opening with the commitment of patrons, Maureen and Tony Wheeler of Lonely Planet. From that day, the Centre of Books, Writing and Ideas became The Wheeler Centre.

Since the first public event in February 2010, the Centre's story and journey has continued to unfurl and grow. In over five years of existence, The Wheeler Centre has established a reputation for ambition, variety and quality. It is firmly established as a leading arts organisation, dedicated to the dual purpose of being both a vibrant hub for the writing and literary sector and producing a diverse programme of public conversations and events.

Over 1800 speakers have participated in more than 1100 public conversations since 2010.

Saturday Pass

9 November 2019
The Wheeler Centre
Aileen Moreton-Robinson, Aretha Brown, Ariel Levy...

Broadside is the new feminist ideas festival from the Wheeler Centre.

Helen Garner

9 November 2019
The Wheeler Centre
Helen Garner and Sarah Krasnostein

In the words of one critic 'to read Helen Garner is to discover what might...

Who Gave You Permission?: Speaking Up and Speaking Out

9 November 2019
The Wheeler Centre
Curtis Sittenfeld, Nayuka Gorrie, Ariel Levy,...

When we’re described as ‘speaking out’, what people really mean is we’re ‘...

A World of Difference: Decolonising Feminism

9 November 2019
The Wheeler Centre
Aileen Moreton-Robinson, Fatima Bhutto, Intan...

Nearly 20 years ago, Aileen Moreton-Robinson’s pioneering work Talkin’...

Zadie Smith

9 November 2019
The Wheeler Centre
Zadie Smith and Jia Tolentino

‘To my mind, a true “creative” should not simply seek to satisfy a pre–...

Things My Mother Never Told Me

9 November 2019
The Wheeler Centre
Aretha Brown, Ariel Levy, Bhenji Ra, Courtney...

Let’s hear it for mothers: the ones we choose, the ones who chose us, those...