keywords: Port Phillip Bay

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Existentialism by the bay

    • Brian Matthews
    • 11 November 2011
    1 Comment

    Bush towns settle into their landscape. The galvanised-iron roofs and encircling verandahs squat with a certainty and a determination that only nature at its worst — fire or flood — might disrupt. Coastal towns, conversely, know all about the uncertain nature of existence.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Conservatives and conservation

    • Tim Beshara
    • 17 October 2017
    8 Comments

    The most prominent self-described conservative in Australia, former prime minister Tony Abbott, has expressed many views on conservation and on the merits of addressing climate change, but none of these views could be argued as coming from a position of conservatism that Teddy Roosevelt could agree with.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Friendlier Ghosts of Australia Days Future

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 28 January 2016
    4 Comments

    The two major challenges facing the world have to do with kindness to strangers and care for the natural world. If the image of the beginnings of Australia is of a boatload of powerful Europeans coming to exploit the land occupied by a primitive people, a better image of future Australia Days might be of Australia sending parties to Indigenous settlements and other nations to discover how to cooperate in the great projects of reconciliation between people and people with nature.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Aboriginal footballers' MCG dreaming

    • Brian Matthews
    • 16 October 2015
    3 Comments

    In the recent AFL Grand Final, the performance of Aboriginal footballer Cyril Rioli seemed to be not much short of magic. Well, perhaps the spirit world did make a contribution. In 1844, a great throng of clans was camped on the site of what became the MCG. Perhaps, 170 years later, Aboriginal footballers, running down the race for the first time and steeling themselves for the noise, the space, the tension, find instead a great sense of intimacy as their feet hit the grass of the oval.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Ghost of weddings past, present and future

    • Brian Matthews
    • 06 December 2013
    6 Comments

    Is there a spirit of place, a kind of psychological imprint that endows a particular location? There are spots along the Coorong in South Australia where, as twilight deepens, you could swear that wraith-like, dark figures are moving through the dunes. Recent events made me wonder if the legendary William Buckley lives on in that way on Victoria's Bellarine Peninsula, where he lived for 32 years among the local Wataurong people.

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  • RELIGION

    Time to draw the line between Australia and Timor Leste

    • Frank Brennan
    • 14 May 2013
    27 Comments

    Australian governments of both political persuasions have reassured the Australian public that they are decent and special when it comes to dealing with the Timorese over disagreements in the Timor Sea. Time for such special pleading is over. For the good of ongoing relations between these two unequal neighbours, it is time for Australia to commit to negotiating final maritime boundaries.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Close-ish encounters with two queens

    • Brian Matthews
    • 30 March 2012
    4 Comments

    I saw a gloved hand at the window and that was it. The experience turned out to be the one time when I saw the Queen 'in the flesh'. I had gone under duress, having even at that young age vestigial republican tendencies. A few weeks ago I went with more enthusiasm to see another Queen. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Book junkie's detox nightmare

    • Brian Matthews
    • 02 September 2011
    7 Comments

    My wife and I are performing a difficult, heart-rending task: culling our books. There are thousands of them, on shelves and in boxes, some of which were sealed and labelled 25 years ago. I know who to blame for setting me on the path to this agonising task. It was Mrs Murphy.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    New laws may force complicity in human rights abuse

    • Brian Toohey
    • 02 April 2007
    4 Comments

    While public attention has been focused on David Hicks, questions remain about Australia's other Guantanamo inmate. Was concern about exposure of Australia's rendering him to Egypt for torture the real reason behind his release in 2005?

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Delicate steps

    • Kirsty Sangster
    • 10 July 2006

    Inga Clendinnen’s Dancing with Strangers entrances Kirsty Sangster.  

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The frontier fallen

    • Tom Griffiths
    • 05 July 2006

    Historians are fighting a mini war over frontier history and the number of Aboriginal dead. Tom Griffiths argues for a different approach.

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  • RELIGION

    In my mother’s footsteps

    • Anna Griffiths
    • 14 May 2006

    Italy, Caravaggio and Catholicism.

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