Search Results: Ellena Savage

  • AUSTRALIA

    Europe's more humane approach to on-water matters

    • Ellena Savage
    • 24 April 2015
    13 Comments

    Australian references to 'boat people' is simplistic and offensive. 'Queue jumper' inaccurate and moralising. Even the term 'asylum seeker' has become politically complicit. European coverage of this week's Mediterranean boat tragedy describes the victims and survivors simply as 'migrants', which is an open description of a person on a boat crossing borders.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Inside the head of an IS martyr

    • Ellena Savage
    • 20 March 2015
    13 Comments

    The language of martyrdom is being used to recruit young Australians to brutal stateless warfare. Because martyrs are morally superior to suburban burnouts. IS propagandist Abu Ismail described Melburnian Jake Bilardi as 'a lion on the battlefield although he was at a young age and with a weak body'. So, Bilardi was a weak young lion and therefore ripe for battle. How obscene!

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Ciggie butt brains indict Aussie middle class elitism

    • Ellena Savage
    • 20 February 2015
    8 Comments

    When Damo and Darren's 'Train Station' — Michael Cusack's animation of an obscene 'part derro, part yobbo, part bogan' duo fighting over a lighter — was published on YouTube, it clocked 2 million views in its first month, and made people very happy. I showed it to a friend who had grown up in England's north under Margaret Thatcher. He was not amused. 'Why are Australians laughing at poor people?' he asked.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    US health care a sick joke that’s coming to Australia

    • Ellena Savage
    • 23 January 2015
    9 Comments

    America's iniquitous health care system is often portrayed with dark humour in popular culture such as the 2007 Michael Moore film Sicko. Our own Federal Government has been putting constant pressure on our system of universal health care as it pursues a course of action that presents class warfare as fiscal responsibility. It raises questions about the vested interests behind dismantling health care protections for poor people.   

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Shock of the new bourgeois reality

    • Ellena Savage
    • 28 November 2014
    9 Comments

    The need for artists to exist inside an economy regulated by middle class tastes and preferences restricts the possibilities for their work. But when our present is rocked by the incredible injustices we are watching unravel in Ferguson, artists are called upon to drop their aspirations for class mobility that is tethered to the material, and instead draw light on the immaterial, Emerson's 'secret'. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Looking for depth in the selfie

    • Ellena Savage
    • 31 October 2014
    4 Comments

    I take a lot of selfies. Some of them are silly, coquettish, dramatic. Others are just my face looking into my computer, sitting where I work, dressed in work clothes. They mean more or less nothing. They’re just an inane collection of data on my laptop, or too easy self-portraits. Nothing means nothing, but it says something about the culture. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The case for remaining single

    • Ellena Savage
    • 03 October 2014
    9 Comments

    In the few times I have felt distressed by the prospect of some kind of eternal singledom, I have reminded myself of how difficult and suffocating romantic love can be, especially in the belittling shadow of celebrity couplings. My accumulated life data tells me that no-one is a perfect partner, even with 'hard work', and there are many more things to love than some perfect other individual. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Wombs for rent

    • Ellena Savage
    • 05 September 2014
    5 Comments

    When Bill Heffernan said that Julia Gillard was unfit for leadership because she was 'deliberately barren', he didn't really err. He just named our preoccupation with motherhood. But is the drive to procreate so powerful and important that it should override the integrity of women in developing countries? Should it continue to be the defining quality of women?

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  • EDUCATION

    Australians don't need to speak proper English

    • Ellena Savage
    • 08 August 2014
    12 Comments

    There's a view that most Australians, including the Prime Minister, still have poor speech skills, and that there ought to be some kind of standardised verbal communication skill-level as a prerequisite for politicians, educators and advocates. Personally I'm quite content with an Australia that is accepting of vocal particularities, the flexibility of meanings, and often humorous miscommunications.

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  • EDUCATION

    Inside the women's lit gender ghetto

    • Ellena Savage
    • 11 July 2014
    3 Comments

    Women's lit needs a course of its own'. How original to segment women's work into a category of its own so that it has no bearing on the mainstream! Men's work is universal, and women's work is specific to women. Sixty-five years later, and Simone de Beauvoir still nails it. So should we feminise the mainstream? Or continue to participate at the margins, and hope that the old guard takes notice?

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  • EDUCATION

    School leavers' class wars

    • Ellena Savage
    • 13 June 2014
    11 Comments

    Year 12 tertiary entrance exams: turning 17-year-olds into nervous wrecks since the 1830s. They divide the smart from the dumb, the hopefuls from the no-hopers, and, what it boils down to more often than not, the privately educated from the state educated. But what if there was another way, a way that properly acknowledged the impact high schools have on their students' access to university admission?

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The right to be bad

    • Ellena Savage
    • 09 May 2014
    8 Comments

    There's nothing wrong with being nice. But women need to stop asking nicely for equality, and instead just expect it. I relate strongly to my near namesake, F. Scott Fitzgerald's Eleanor Savage, who in 1920 asks why she couldn't have been born 100 years into the future, assuming that a century of progress would give her the freedoms she desires. Women do have it it better today, but that is not the same as having innate equality.

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