A private life – a book review

Author: Michael Kirby

Title: A Private Life

Yan and Katherine’s pick

Michael Kirby was a talented kid who grew up   in Concord, then  a working class suburb.  He was educated  in the  Public school system, gaining entry into the OC class in Summer Hill Public school,   then went  on to  the selective Fort Street High. His was very Sydneyand indeed, the book gives a very private life.

Kirby  has been fighting for justice for many  years both  as  a high court judge and as a  retiree. He continues to advocate for  human rights for those who suffer from injustice.

Michael Kirby recalls the concerns he had to face in his early career and how  he was afraid for his grandfather who  was a member of the Communist Party and how he had to hide his homosexuality from  his  peers and society in general.

He has  served as a  member on many national and international bodies, including the WHO’s Global Commission on AIDs, the International Commission of Jurists, the UNESCO International Bioethics Committee, and other organizations, Kirby has taken a life long journey from the innerSydneyto various places where he could advocate Human rights.

He has spoken at   places like St Ignatius’CatholicCollegefor boys  about homophobia  in order to  promote tolerance and understanding and , journeyed  toZambia  a country that has been devastated  by the HIV pandemic.  Where he has appealed for justice and legal assistance  for those affected by HIV.  Kirby truly believes in justice and love,  as he says  it is  “Love for the vulnerable, the poor and those sick of body and heart’ that drives him from place to place.

The book is written beautifully and sometimes very humorous. In  his  private life and public life he   expresses great passion and sympathy for   people who are  disadvantaged, and he has made a difference by coming out and declaring his ‘true’ sexuality  and thus serving as a ‘role model’  especially for young  gay people.  In addition to this his decisions as a High court judge are highly respected.

I would suggest this book to everyone.