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  • Happy Young Australian Aboriginal girl learning to sing and dance. Stock photo / Getty
    education

    Keys to closing the education gap

    • Anthony Dillon
    • 16 August 2019

    We need to change the language from improving 'attendance' to improving 'engagement' — to reflect that schools need to be places of learning for Indigenous children, not just minding centres, and that learning comes with engagement.

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  • Dr David Holmes presents on what is best practice communication of climate science and impacts for Victorian policy makers, for Monash Climate Change Communication Research Hub, Melbourne.
    environment

    Can weather presenters be climate saviours?

    • Greg Foyster
    • 16 August 2019

    The media often portrays climate change as a political issue. But politicians are the least trusted messengers for climate information. They really turn off the public. The most trusted are scientists, firefighters, farmers and weather presenters. Of these, only weather presenters have a large audience and are already skilled communicators.

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  • Aboriginal dot art from the cover of Disability Rights Now 2019
    australia

    Picture is still bleak for people with disability

    • El Gibbs
    • 15 August 2019
    1 Comment

    Disabled people in Australia are being locked up, dying young and living in poverty, because they are disabled, and particularly if they are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander. It's been 11 years since Australia ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, yet disabled people are far from being equal to non-disabled people.

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  •  Aerial view of Manokwari, capital of West Pupua. (Ricky Martin / EyeEm)

    Australia's illogic over Timor and West Papua

    • Pat Walsh
    • 13 August 2019
    5 Comments

    One wonders if the Prime Minister will be aware of the supreme irony of these two events, the lack of logic in Australia's conflicting policies on the fate of the two peoples, and Canberra's flexible approach to the much vaunted international rules based order when it does not serve pragmatic national interests.

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  • Protesters dance outside the Hong Kong Space Museum during a demonstration on 8 August 2019. (Photo by Anthony Kwan/Getty Images)

    Tears in store after Hong Kong chaos

    • Michael Kelly
    • 08 August 2019
    8 Comments

    The betting among many observers is that the current chaos will end in tears. The massing of troops at the border is one sign. But the biggest thing that suggests that the PLA will march in and declare martial law is that the Chinese Communist Party has what we call 'form'.

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  • President Donald Trump departs the White House en route to Dayton, Ohio And El Paso, Texas following a pair of deadly shooting attacks in those cities. (Photo by Zach Gibson/Getty Images)

    El Paso shooting and the rise of eco-fascism

    • Jeff Sparrow
    • 07 August 2019
    4 Comments

    The widespread despair about climate change, and the seeming inability of progressives to offer a solution, provides fertile soil for ecofascism to grow. In a sense, given the scale of the crisis, their apocalyptic vision of an environmental race war can sound more realistic than the pallid centrist nostrums that everyone knows won't work.

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  • Smiling woman (Getty Creative)

    Ovarian transplant pitch demonises menopause

    • Kate Galloway
    • 13 August 2019
    3 Comments

    As a society we have tended to ignore ageing women, and menopause has been read as a signal of our descent into decrepitude. The sales pitch for a procedure to delay menopause buys into this way of thinking. For many women menopause is not a burden, but a gift: no more menstruation, no more pregnancy, new purpose.

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  • Cartoon by Chris Johnston has Scott Morrison campaigning like n extravert and Bill Shorten campaigning like an introvert.

    The contrasting gospels of Morrison and Shorten

    • Barry Gittins
    • 13 August 2019
    2 Comments

    In Jensen's take, while Shorten expresses honest doubt and cites Christ's golden rule, care of his Jesuit educators, Morrison indulges in a marathon of spiritual self-indulgence. Morrison masterfully works right-wing media outlets, or is worked by them, with Alan Jones leading the PM through a radio interview 'like Simpson led his donkey'.

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  • Screenshot of @LaLegale on Twitter

    The tweet smell of APS authoritarianism

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 12 August 2019
    4 Comments

    Should a public service have people with political, disagreeable opinions? No, according to the guidelines of employment in the Australian Public Service. The decision of the Australian High Court in the case of Comcare v Banerji is a salient warning to employees in the APS. Obedience, it seems, must be unquestionable and total.

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  • Trasfigurazione di Cristo (Savoldo)

    Hiroshima and Transfiguration

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 13 August 2019
    8 Comments

    One event, recalling the revelation of Jesus' relationship to God, is a feast of light; the other, recalling man's inhumanity to man, speaks of darkness. Both are pointers to possible human futures: one of glory and the other of annihilation. The history of nuclear weapons and recent developments present this choice more starkly.

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  • Rocket paper-cut shape on old wood plank with rustic texture background. Credit: whyframestudio / Getty

    Plenary Council rocket science a matter of trust

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 05 August 2019
    45 Comments

    The inclusive and consultative processes in the early stages of preparation for the Plenary Council are a vast improvement on previous practice. They express the desire to involve Catholics in the council. If they are simply dropped on completion and not kept alive in the church, however, the trust they have engendered will be lost.

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  • Artist's impression of Fr Bernard Page in early 20th century Russia surrounded by British soldiers. By Chris Johnston

    Father Page versus the Bolsheviks

    • Nick Brodie
    • 26 July 2019
    15 Comments

    This year marks the centenary of British forces landing in Russia to fight the Bolsheviks. Now, Russia is generally agreed to be interfering in liberal democracies around the globe. A Jesuit priest serving as a chaplain to the British forces helps illuminate this oft-neglected story, and reveals a bit of how the Church was adapting.

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  • Extinction Rebellion protestors block the streets of Brisbane on 6 August 2019. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

    Power in Rebellion's civil disobedience

    • Jacinta Bowler
    • 15 August 2019
    5 Comments

    Extinction Rebellion is the biggest environmental movement we've seen in Australia in years, and the group is well aware of the disruption they are causing — it's baked into their strategy. Is the inconvenience, disruption, and vitriol worth it? Is it actually going to turn public opinion one way or another? History suggests it just might.

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  • This cartoon by Chris Johnston contrasts two models depicting the year 2050. The model constructed by a child depicts nature benefiting from clean energy. The one by the adults shows nature choked by fossil fuels and broken nuclear power.

    Climate catastrophe and the irrational race

    • Megan Graham
    • 05 August 2019
    7 Comments

    The debate around climate change shows the danger in believing we humans are principally rational. History gives example after example of how our biases can make us do very irrational things. In the words of Dan Ariely, our species is 'predictably irrational'. It is helpful for us to know this, so that we can become better.

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  • Person silhouetted against a sky that is both bright and dark. By gaiamoments via Getty

    Living in the climate lag

    • Greg Foyster
    • 22 July 2019
    22 Comments

    Five years ago I woke in the middle of the night and wrote a letter to myself about climate change. 'The world around you no longer exists. The conditions that created it have already changed and the society you know remains the same only due to inertia.' Now I know I'm not the only one who's lain shuddering with this awful premonition.

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  • Overhead view of circular Canberra streets

    Parliamentary circles

    • Sandra Renew
    • 12 August 2019
    2 Comments

    On the Circle driving around the Parliament ... you say it's all swings and roundabouts, a circumlocutory carousel, a beauty of tautology, movement continuity ... no pause to merge, roundabout way of saying, you will never be us.

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  • Figs image by Bertl123 / Getty

    An Italian kiss

    • Meg Dolan
    • 05 August 2019
    4 Comments

    He proceeded to move in with silence. His eyelash touched her cheek first, then his lips. Only one with an expert heart could get it this right, she thought to herself, as he kissed the right, then left cheek, pressing his fig-lips precisely in the right place.

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  • The Enlightenment of the Greengage Tree, by Shokoofeh Azar (translated by Adrien Kijek)

    New points of view found in translation

    • Neve Mahoney
    • 05 August 2019
    3 Comments

    Translations have a knack for defamiliarising English and how we think language and storytelling works. They also expose English-speaking readers to literary movements and times in history of which they might not otherwise have much knowledge. Work is being done to broaden the published translations we read.

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