keywords: Blogs

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Loathsome 'Handmaid' erases race

    • Celeste Liddle
    • 08 July 2019
    10 Comments

    The main character has a black partner, and her best friend is a black lesbian. Yet there is no exploration of race politics. We are supposed to believe that a world which is both incredibly class-driven and misogynistic is also non-racist. Even though we know through intersectionality theory and basic world history that this never happens.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Dictators, democrats, and Egypt after Morsi

    • Irfan Yusuf
    • 24 June 2019
    2 Comments

    Egypt's first and thus far only democratically elected President Mohamed Morsi died in court while being tried for espionage following a lengthy period in prison. He is described as an 'Islamist' but never as a democrat. It's as if the two are necessarily mutually exclusive. Must they be? Was he any less democratic than his predecessors?

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Aboriginal Ministers maintain the status quo

    • Celeste Liddle
    • 19 June 2019
    8 Comments

    It's long fascinated me that it tends to be the conservative side of politics that has delivered many of our Indigenous political firsts. Perhaps it's simply because Indigenous conservatives are, by virtue of their politics, no real threat to the status quo. Our Minister for Indigenous Australians Ken Wyatt is a case in point.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Lessons from GetUp in how not to do activism

    • Irfan Yusuf
    • 23 May 2019
    9 Comments

    The most successful political movements are those flexible enough to co-opt the rhetorical and ideological tropes of their opponents. The ones which fail are those which insist on ideological purity. They may be well-resourced, have plenty of volunteers and ambitious programs. But all this may count for little if they cannot sell their ideas.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Aboriginal issues are still not a vote-winner

    • Celeste Liddle
    • 10 May 2019
    7 Comments

    We can tell the Morrison government has no interest in Indigenous affairs because, apart from some money for suicide prevention programs (albeit less than half that requested), its budget showed a series of cuts. There is a lot of unfinished business to be addressed before it makes sense to adopt a voice to Parliament in the Constitution.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Pigeon English: a 'lost' Les Murray interview

    • Philip Harvey
    • 06 May 2019
    10 Comments

    'English became the best pigeon in the world, it picked up stuff from everywhere.' In this never-before-heard interview from 2013, the late great poet Les Murray reflects on his work, on language, and on what poetry actually 'does'.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Spirit wit: Five sonnets for Les Murray

    • Philip Harvey
    • 02 May 2019
    4 Comments

    You could contrive a meandering sonnet, broach the third level of meaning with ease — Once main lines are coursing and images breeze. You were in it, around, beyond, upon it.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Stop correcting other people’s grammar

    • Neve Mahoney
    • 20 February 2019
    27 Comments

    There is still a segment of the internet obsessed with enforcing 'correct' grammar: the self-styled Grammar Police. In communicating with others, grammar provides clarity, and Australian standard grammar is one way of accomplishing that. But knowing the standardised rules is a skill not everyone has the same access to.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Aboriginal women lead fight against violence

    • Celeste Liddle
    • 19 February 2019

    If the rest of Australia was as brave as those four women who told their stories, and confronted their fears regarding the full extent of what safety, autonomy and equality for Aboriginal women might truly look like — free from racism, sexism and a state which continues to benefit from our oppression — things could actually get better.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Undeterred by Kondo, let your library overflow

    • Philip Harvey
    • 08 February 2019
    8 Comments

    It's all very well to remove excess furniture, but furniture is not books. How many chairs does one need? Chairs are not books. To reduce a library as a household expedience is to objectify the books. Their contents are emptied of value, their history relegated to out-of-date. They have no more meaning than books in an Ikea display room.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    This Invasion Day, march for the future

    • Celeste Liddle
    • 22 January 2019

    This Invasion Day, instead of calling on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to conform to simplistic solutions such as changing the date of a public holiday geared around reinforcing jingoism and nationalism, walk alongside us and commit to doing better.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Melbourne punks are at the forefront of protest

    • Celeste Liddle
    • 18 December 2018

    While Melbourne has long been the city of protest, it is also a major global centre for quality protest music. The songs are defiant, political, loud and proud; they're staunch, they're angry, they're educative, they're funny and they demand to be listened to. These local bands are full of women, queer-identifying people, or people of colour.

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