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  • AUSTRALIA

    All the world is a stage

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 08 December 2022

    Once protests would have found expression in powerfully argued and persuasively delivered speeches. Now people look less to the power and skill of the words and more to the gestures in which they are embodied. This precedence given to performative language over deliberative language deserves reflection. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Intimations of immortality

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 06 December 2022
    8 Comments

    The child, Wordsworth thought, is able to witness the divine in nature, but gradually this ability fades. Whereas once everything seemed apparelled in celestial light/ the glory and the freshness of a dream, four stanzas end with the questions Whither is fled the visionary gleam? Where is it now, the glory and the dream? We know this development happens to us all.

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  • RELIGION

    The Plenary Council is dead, long live the Synod of Bishops

    • John Warhurst
    • 06 December 2022
    3 Comments

    The Synod of Bishops, to which all People of God in Australia have now had their attention redirected after the Plenary Council, is another gigantic exercise in consultation and discernment undertaken by the Church. The possibilities for progress are inspiring, but also hedged around by enormous pressures of time and capacity. In a sense it is the Plenary Council writ large. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Humanity on display

    • Michael McVeigh
    • 05 December 2022
    1 Comment

    I certainly don’t blame anyone for ignoring or boycotting the World Cup; there are plenty of reasons for doing so. But despite efforts of people behind the scenes to focus attention solely on the pitch, if you do pay attention, there are human stories on display, worth your time.  

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    An unlikely friendship: The letters of Wendy Beckett and Robert Ellsberg

    • Philip Harvey
    • 02 December 2022
    3 Comments

    Wendy Beckett and Orbis Books publisher Robert Ellsberg exchanged letters on a near daily basis during the last three years of Sister Wendy’s life. What began as a correspondence on saints evolved into a joyful and intimate exchange about the nature of love, suffering and the need for daily grace.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The public life of emotional Intelligence

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 01 December 2022
    4 Comments

    Emotional intelligence is one of those terms that is hard to define. They take their meaning from people whom we think certainly possess it and those whom we think certainly lack it. In the aftermath of the Victorian election we might also ask whether it matters if political leaders have emotional intelligence or not. Will it help them win elections or contribute to their defeat? 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Trust over tech: Confronting tertiary cheating

    • Emma Wilkins
    • 01 December 2022

    University students across the country are using so-called ‘study’ sites to buy essays and answers for online assessments. Australia’s academic integrity regulator has since blocked scores of sites, but there are still work-arounds; experts say the problem is likely worse than we realise, and almost impossible to solve.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    When raising a flag means death

    • Susan Connelly
    • 01 December 2022
    2 Comments

    Filep Karma was found dead on a beach on 1 November, 2022. He was a respected and long-time activist for Papuan freedom. He was jailed in July 1998 and then released after eighteen months. In December 2004 he was again arrested and charged, being sentenced to fifteen years in prison. His crimes? Repeatedly raising the Morning Star flag.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    An Indigenous Voice: Truth, treaty and reconciliation

    • Frank Brennan
    • 01 December 2022
    15 Comments

    We have a lot of work to do if there is to be any prospect of a successful referendum on the Voice to Parliament, which Indigenous people have put to us as the mode by which they want to be recognised in the Constitution. They have said they want a Voice. Now, we can debate whether it be a Voice to Parliament or a Voice to Parliament and government, or a Voice just about particular laws.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Scott Morrison and the Bell inquiry

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 30 November 2022
    1 Comment

    In 2020 and 2021, Scott Morrison secretly had himself appointed to administer the health, finance, treasury, home affairs and industry, science, energy and resources ministries. The newly elected Prime Minister Anthony Albanese charged Former High Court judge Virginia Bell with the task of investigating the affair.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The subtle art of people-watching

    • Barry Gittins
    • 29 November 2022
    2 Comments

    Sometimes it pays to sit still in a central business district, the aorta of any city, and nod in recognition to life as it passes you by. Bypassed from the stream, you watch and learn as the passers-by flow around you. Mystery and revelation. Connection and dissing. Peace and discord. Meaning, transcendence and futile, random pain. It’s all there if you look close enough. Pause long enough to witness the mysteries.  

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Breaking with bad programming

    • Michele Frankeni
    • 28 November 2022

    Does it matter that the Midsomer episode that has me so exercised didn’t mention attempted rape? After all, the guy was charged with murder — perhaps a more serious charge? And it is only a TV program for heaven’s sake. But even though occurring on a TV program, to not call out attempted rape is to trivialise it.

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