Justice Michael Kirby
Helena Kennedy talks to Justice Michael Kirby, the first Australian High Court judge to come out as gay and who argued forcefully for equal rights for homosexuals.
The first of a new series of conversations between barrister Helena Kennedy and some of the world's most brilliant and influential lawyers and judges.
Helena's guests have all demonstrated courage. Their willingness to campaign on human rights issues has brought them into conflict with governments and other powerful sections of society.
Her first guest is Justice Michael Kirby, the first Australian High Court judge to come out as gay and who argued forcefully, in the face of considerable opposition, for equal rights for homosexuals.
In a profession most commonly marked by conformity and deference to legal protocol, Michael became known as the "great dissenter", frequently voting against his fellow judges and doing the thing that judges are not supposed to do - expressing his personal views outside of the courtroom.
Other guests in the series include the first chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Luis Moreno Ocampo, given the task of bringing some of the world's worst criminals to justice, and solicitor Gareth Peirce who has spent much of her 30 year career representing Irish and Muslim terror suspects.
Producer: Brian King
An Above The Title production for BBC Radio 4.
You are at the first episode