Search Results: Brian Matthews

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    When nature is the enemy

    • Brian Matthews
    • 11 February 2009
    7 Comments

    Fires and floods, murderous cyclones, unprecedented storms — none of them confined to their time honoured places and seasons. Nature is no longer our familiar element and our inspiration. It's running amok.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    On Calvin, soaps and international Scrabble

    • Brian Matthews
    • 06 February 2009

    'Toxic feedback' is an occupational hazard for columnists. You learn to ignore the aspiration of some readers to see you fed to sharks or eviscerated in public, but the pedants are harder to cop.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Woomf! Plunggg! Protons collide with doomsday fanaticism

    • Brian Matthews
    • 07 January 2009
    4 Comments

    The rumoured potential of the Large Hadron Collider to bring about the disintegration of the universe captured the public imagination. 'Hadron' is a word susceptible to misprinting of a kind that destroys the seriousness of any discussion. (September 2008)

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Scenes from a taxi

    • Brian Matthews
    • 17 December 2008
    1 Comment

    I don't support the view that cab drivers are sources of homespun wisdom and arcane knowledge. Australian cabbies are an amiable, diverse lot, not given to philosophy, though I encountered one spectacular exception.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Secret life of a bullied writer

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 05 December 2008
    4 Comments

    If Manning Clark was oversensitive to criticism, he was also strongly, sometimes brutally, criticised by his peers and by journalists. Matthews' biography presents the relationship between Clark's writing and his dramatic inner world.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The Lawson long shot

    • Brian Matthews
    • 04 November 2008
    5 Comments

    It's 1996 and I'm saddling up to give the Sir Robert Menzies Lecture at London University. My topic is Henry Lawson and Manning Clark. 'Manfred who?' asks a baffled London colleague. The lecture's on Melbourne Cup Day. It could be an omen.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The battle for the economy class armrest

    • Brian Matthews
    • 15 October 2008
    10 Comments

    Recent events both aeronautical and financial have been enough to scare anyone off banks and aeroplanes forever. Global economic chaos is nothing compared with the trauma of being stuck next to a large person on a plane.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Woomf! Plunggg! Protons collide with doomsday fanaticism

    • Brian Matthews
    • 17 September 2008
    1 Comment

    The rumoured potential of the Large Hadron Collider to bring about the disintegration of the universe captured the public imagination. 'Hadron' is a word susceptible to misprinting of a kind that destroys the seriousness of any discussion.

    READ MORE
  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Books survive the orgasm of closure

    • Brian Matthews
    • 20 August 2008
    3 Comments

    We've seen the 'end of history' and the 'death of God', yet the humble book lives on. While technology buffs embrace the e-book, printed books continue to exercise an atavistic attraction through their fusion of form and content.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Pub mural's lost legacy

    • Brian Matthews
    • 23 July 2008

    The Great Uraidla Pub Mural was the wonder and enigma of locals and tourists alike. The occasional knowledgeable blow-in would be flabbergasted and deeply impressed to find 'a Tom Gleghorn' on the wall.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Another victim of bureaucratic sludge

    • Brian Matthews
    • 18 June 2008
    1 Comment

    Things are Kafkaesque when you are caught in a labyrinth of unmanageable and inexplicable circumstances. I sprang to the phone and a pleasant, robotic female voice told me how valuable I was and that I was sixth in the queue.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Gardening while Burma generals fiddle

    • Brian Matthews
    • 21 May 2008
    2 Comments

    The ordered natural world of the garden is a place where disturbing thoughts can be annihilated, but only temporarily. Half a world away, brutal generals are using natural disaster to repress the weak and powerless.

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