ANU/Canberra Times meet with author with Hugh Mackay

The Art of Belonging advances the argument put forward in Mackay's bestselling The Good Life: a 'good life' is not lived in isolation or in the pursuit of independent goals; a good life is lived at the heart of a thriving community, among people we trust, and within an environment of mutual respect.

Drawing on 50 years' experience as a social researcher, Mackay creates a fictional suburb, Southwood, and populates it with characters who - like most of us - struggle to reconcile their need to belong with their desire to live life on their own terms. He chronicles the numerous human interactions and inevitable conflicts that arise in a community when characters assert their own needs at the expense of others.

The Art of Belonging is the book that will reignite the conversation about how we want to live; it will provide the framework for those who argue for a particular vision of community, one that sustains, protects and nurtures the many, and not just the few.

Hugh Mackay is a social researcher and the author of 16 books, including, most recently, The Good Life, a 2013 bestseller, and his sixth novel, Infidelity. He is a Fellow of the Australian Psychological Society and the recipient of several honorary doctorates from Australian universities.

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Books will be available for sale and signings will take place after the event at the Co-op stand.