Creation Stories at State Library New South Wales


The capacity to tell stories – along with language and the ability to create art – is seen as both intrinsic and unique to the human species. Over thousands of years, we’ve forged narratives of our origins, our journeys and our dreams as a means of defining our place in the world. Griffith Review’s 20th anniversary edition, Creation Stories, mines the power and possibility of these stories and what they can tell us about who we are.

In a wide-ranging conversation that celebrates this landmark edition, four powerhouse writers from Western Sydney’s Sweatshop Literacy Movement – Michael Mohammed Ahmad, Winnie Dunn, Daniel Nour and Natalia Figueroa Barroso – discuss and share their work in Griffith Review and how their stories embody narratives of empowerment, expression and empathy.

Michael Mohammed Ahmad is the founding director of Sweatshop Literacy Movement and the award-winning author of The Tribe and The Lebs. His latest novel, The Other Half of You, was shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Award and won the fiction award at the 2022 Queensland Literary Awards.

Winnie Dunn is the General Manager of Sweatshop Literacy Movement and the editor of several critically acclaimed anthologies, including Another Australia. She is a writer of Tongan descent from Mount Druitt and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Western Sydney University. Her work has been published in The Guardian, HuffPost Australia, Griffith Review, Meanjin and SBS Voices. In 2022, she was a finalist for Western Sydney University’s Breakthrough Alumni Award. Winnie is currently completing her debut novel, Dirt Poor Islanders (Hachette, 2024), which has been assisted by the Australia Council for the Arts.

Daniel Nour is an Egyptian-Australian writer and journalist. His work has featured in The New York Times, SBS Voices, Meanjin, Kill Your Darlings, Mascara Literary Review, The Big Issue and Eureka Street. In 2021 he was awarded the Affirm Press Mentorship for Sweatshop Writers.

Natalia Figueroa Barroso is a Uruguayan-Australian writer of Charrúa, African and Iberian origins who was raised between the unceded lands of Charrúa Nation and Dharug Country. Her work has appeared in Sweatshop Women: Volume One, Racism: Stories on Fear, Hate & Bigotry, SBS VoicesKindling and Sage, Between Two Worlds, The Big Issue, Puentes Review, Meanjin, ABC Everyday and Mascara Literary Review, among others.

Carody Culver is the editor of Griffith Review. She was a contributing editor for Peppermint magazine and has written for publications including Kill Your Darlings, The Toast and Books+Publishing. Her chapbook, The Morgue I Think the Deader It Gets, was published by Cordite in 2022, and she’s been a featured Australian poet on the Best American Poetry blog.

This event is proudly supported by the NSW Government through the Culture Up Late Program.

Share event

Connected edition

  • Published 20230502
  • ISBN: 978-1-922212-83-2
  • Extent: 264pp
  • Paperback (234 x 153mm), eBook
Stay up to date with the latest, news, articles and special offers from Griffith Review.