keywords: Biography

There are more than 200 results, only the first 200 are displayed here.

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Speak of the Devil no longer

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 20 May 2015
    19 Comments

    The Death of God debate raged on and off several decades ago. Now it's the Devil's turn. Medieval clerics believed he was everywhere. Earlier this year the General Synod of the Church of England decided it was time for him to retire, and have 'disappeared' him. 

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  • Perth's affable answer to Melbourne's Archbishop Daniel Mannix

    • Simon Caterson
    • 02 April 2015
    4 Comments

    In contrast to the sectarian suspicion expressed by elements of non-Catholic Australia towards Melbourne’s Archbishop Daniel Mannix, who opposed military conscription during the First World War, his Perth contemporary Archbishop Patrick Clune was lauded during the war as ‘pro-war effort, pro-conscription, pro-empire and pro-crown’. Clune travelled from Perth all the way to the Western Front so as to minister to the Catholic soldiers sent there, and he enjoyed warm relations with Protestants and Jews.   

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    The General of the poor and the Iron Lady of industry

    • Barry Gittins
    • 01 April 2015
    15 Comments

    Former Australian Salvation Army world leader General Eva Burrows, who died on 20 March, tried in vain to engage the former British PM in making the preferential option for the poor. ‘Margaret Thatcher was a disappointment,’ the General said. ‘I felt she didn’t have a deep, true feeling for the poor. I invited her to come out on the soup run indirectly and said it wouldn’t be a media event, we’d go incognito, but the answer was no.’

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Triumph over forced adoption practice

    • Kate Howarth
    • 30 March 2015
    12 Comments

    I was sent to St Margaret's Home for Unwed Girls, and when I didn’t buckle to pressure to surrender my son for adoption, I was tossed onto the street. I went from rock bottom to rise to the top of my field, only to have everything pulled from underneath me. I managed to get back up again and realise my childhood dream of one day becoming a writer, lending a voice to tens of thousands of young women who lost their children in what is now known as 'forced adoption'.   

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Mannix, master conjurer in the cause of the underdog

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 26 March 2015
    15 Comments

    Daniel Mannix, who was Catholic Archbishop of Melbourne 1917-63, knew how to control an audience and shift the perception of events. He argued fiercely against conscription in the 1917 Referendum, and railed against the exploitation of struggling workers. On finishing his new biography, I imagined a meeting between him and Pope Francis, both masters of public symbols with a disdain for church clericalism and sanctimonious speech.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Helen Garner's 'Best Essays' triumph

    • Barry Gittins and Jen Vuk
    • 13 February 2015

    The Best Australian Essays 2014 finely illustrates the unnervingly unclear line between essay and short story, but no-one plays with form quite like the indomitable Helen Garner. She offers such a brooding, aching ode to her mother. Proof again that good writing is an inexorable, spiritual exercise that seers itself into the reader's memory. How does she do it?

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Paul Collins illuminates sectarian divide in Australian history

    • Barry Gittins and Jen Vuk
    • 19 December 2014
    4 Comments

    The chasm between Catholics and Protestants is thankfully unknown to my children. Paul Collins' new book A Very Contrary Irishman - The Life and Journeys of Jeremiah O'Flynn is a labour of love that presents a very driven man of the colonial era whose actions - and attributed actions - changed lives and helped shape our culture.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    My friend the ox

    • Nola Firth
    • 04 November 2014
    7 Comments

    Great ox, your shoulders, rump, are dark inked and centre stage. But your horns, clear pointed, are mere memories of anger's mark... You no longer snort and stamp, your eye looks shy and hushed

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Journalist martyr's war on drugs

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 23 October 2014
    1 Comment

    In 1996, US journalist Gary Webb claimed in the San Jose Mercury News that the CIA and US State Department had supported the smuggling of crack cocaine into the US, as a way to help fund Contra rebels against the revolutionary government of Nicaragua during the Reagan era. This 'dark alliance', Webb claimed, contributed significantly to the crack epidemic in Los Angeles, and fuelled the War on Drugs that Regan himself famously escalated.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    My father's reign of mathematical precision

    • Nick Gadd
    • 16 July 2014
    14 Comments

    He was a civil engineer. His professional life was a matter of mathematics and rules. Driving over a bridge, he’d quote the equations that ensured it was safe and stable. There were formulae in his domestic life too. Strict rules about stacking the dishwasher. Knives and forks pointed downwards, to avoid careless stabbings.

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  • RELIGION

    The peacemaker pope

    • Bruce Duncan
    • 24 April 2014
    7 Comments

    Quite striking is the similarity between the warm response to Pope John XXIII half a century ago and to Pope Francis today. Both broke through the gilded cage of outdated conventions and stereotyped expectations. Both stepped over barriers of ideology or religion to evoke bonds of a common humanity committed to promoting the wellbeing of all people, especially the poor and marginalised. The contexts were of course quite different.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Punk's holy fools still putting it to Putin

    • Barry Gittins and Jen Vuk
    • 11 April 2014

    Journalist Masha Gessen describes the members of Pussy Riot as 'Putin's ideal enemies'. In recent months, their nemesis has hosted the Olympics, taken control of Crimea and clamped down on media. For a group born out of 'the repressions of a corporate political system that directs its power against basic human rights', Pussy Riot still has much to roar about, even if its signature 'punk prayer' sounds more than ever like a plea.

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