Volume 17 No.8

02 May 2007


 

  • RELIGION

    Australians quietly spiritual, not Godless

    • Paul Collins
    • 15 May 2007
    17 Comments

    In 2005, Pope Benedict targeted Australians as world leaders in Godlessness. However a recent book argues that Australian spirituality is understated, wary of enthusiasm, authority, and characterised by "a serious quiet reverence".

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Vietnam's miracles of balance

    • Peter Pierce
    • 15 May 2007

    The city cyclo traffic could be negotiated because cramped spaces have generated considerate attitudes rather than rage. Physical accommodations to crowding and privation tempt the traveller into laudatory flights, but the people’s attitudes seem altogether too matter-of-fact.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Keneally's mature insights into character

    • Tony Smith
    • 15 May 2007

    To the extent that novels exist to provide insights into character, minds and decisions, Tom Keneally's new novel is arguably his best.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Quirky visuals elicit empathy with troubled soul

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 15 May 2007

    Stephane has an overactive imagination and is prone to bizarre dreams and daydreams. Director Michael Gondry manages to wring plenty of emotion out of his high-concept premise.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Children's publishing fuelled by nostalgia?

    • Hilary Rogers
    • 15 May 2007
    8 Comments

    There’s something very reassuring about the idea that what we loved to read will still appeal to kids now. Choosing a brand of food for our pets is less fraught, unless we were dogs in past lives.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The master of talkback radio

    • Colin Long
    • 15 May 2007
    1 Comment

    Mr Howard is a master of talking over people he doesn’t want to hear from. By going on talkback, politicians can appear to be available in an open and unstructured forum, reaching out over the heads of the media to constituents.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    What motivates the aspiring creative writer?

    • Mary Manning
    • 15 May 2007
    3 Comments

    When prospective plumbing or hospitality students are quizzed about why they want to do a course, there are easy answers about improving job skills. Not so for aspiring creative writing students.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Flying with disability in Second Life

    • Margaret Cassidy
    • 15 May 2007
    6 Comments

    The online virtual world Second Life has been subject to bad press focussing on examples of narcissistic and unprincipled behaviour. But paralympian Niels Schuddeboom has found an opportunity to forget his disability and experience life as a walking avatar.

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  • RELIGION

    In praise of hypocrisy

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 15 May 2007
    2 Comments

    Symbolic gestures, whether at personal or at national level, are effective, even though they will have a barely measurable effect on water supply or global warming. Our world becomes different, and our sense of what has priority in it also changes.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Sri Lanka's seesaw of war and cricket

    • Hector Welgampola
    • 15 May 2007
    11 Comments

    Last week, Sri Lanka's media reported Mahela Jayawardena’s Buddhist parents praying at a Hindu temple for his team’s success in the World Cup cricket. The continuing war is a legacy of the divide and rule strategy of the colonial elites.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Someone will have to go

    • Peter Bakowski
    • 15 May 2007

    Having looked at the quarterly figures, he says / that someone will have to go. / It's Weems, a bit of a gambler, a bit of a tippler, / whose eyes stray from sales charts and balance sheets / to ankles and the racing form.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Glossing over Kevin Rudd's Catholic school days

    • Tom Cranitch
    • 15 May 2007
    7 Comments

    A Fairfax press article last week speculated about the Labor leader's reluctance to talk about his 18 months as a boarder at Brisbane's Marist College Ashgrove. It is most likely that his greatest difficulty was his need to grieve after the sudden death of his father.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The virtue of having a go

    • Michael Mullins
    • 15 May 2007
    2 Comments

    Martin Flanagan of The Age links the sometimes defiant spirit of having a go with “common goodness”. He says this is found in the midst of wars and despair and, most importantly, “the blindness that flows from political and religious ideology”.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Say 'no' to nuclear – but not for the usual reasons

    • Les Coleman
    • 15 May 2007
    8 Comments

    Opponents of nuclear power in Australia most often use environmental and economic arguments. The real problem with establishing a nuclear power industry is that it is a hugely complex and dangerous technology, and Australia has a poor record in safely managing even relatively simple technologies.

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