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Keywords: American

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Trousered heroines: Women’s rights and the culture wars

    • Juliette Hughes 
    • 28 April 2022
    5 Comments

    The rights and wrongs of what has happened in recent years regarding the experience and sufferings of transgender people have ended up as a polarised and difficult area of discourse, affecting women’s lives and rights far more than men’s. In the current situation, Raymond is a clear voice about the erosion of women’s rights and safety in what should be the safest, most pluralistic arena of all: academia. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    A felicitous career

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 28 April 2022
    3 Comments

    The quality of Niall’s writing is evident in An Accidental Career, though easily unnoticed. It lies in the clarity of her thought, her exact choice of words, the alternation of anecdote and reflection and the self-effacement that creates a direct link between the reader and the work itself. Her writing has the rare gift of simplicity. The precision of the title is characteristic of the book as a whole.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Carrying the weight of the daily news

    • Cherie Gilmour
    • 29 March 2022

    A house bursts into flames as it’s submerged in floodwaters. A doctor tells a cameraman filming a dying Ukrainian child to send the footage to Putin. A newspaper delves into the murder of a young woman. It’s like a fever dream: a pandemic bleeds into the edges of a global war. The news presents information, and it has no moral duty to tell us how we should feel about it or help us untangle the knot of feelings which emerge. 

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Let slip the dogs of war: A tale of futility and bloody-mindedness

    • Dorothy Horsfield
    • 22 March 2022

    Moscow-based Director of the Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC)Dr Andrei Kortunov warned of its tragic consequences for Russia in an article published four days before the launch of his country’s invasion of Ukraine. The de facto partition of Ukraine, he said, as a result of the Kremlin’s recognition of the independence of the People’s Republics of Donetsk and Luhansk, will signify ‘the final formalisation of the division of Europe’ from which there may be no easy retreat.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Franzen and faith at the crossroads

    • Paul Mitchell
    • 10 February 2022
    2 Comments

    American novelist Jonathan Franzen has in his last three fictional works taken words that loom large in the collective consciousness and built worlds around them. First, it was Freedom (2010), then Purity (2015), and now Crossroads (2021). The latter title, of course, refers to a literal and figurative decision-making moment, but also the mythic locale where blues singers, notably Robert Johnson, made their pacts with the devil. 

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Conflict over the conflict

    • Kenneth S Stern
    • 08 February 2022
    12 Comments

    The university campus is really the ideal place to tackle thorny issues. It is a safe place to examine all ideas, even — or perhaps especially — those that people find offensive or disturbing. The sad fact, though, is that there is a push these days to send the opposite message to students — that they should be shielded from intellectual discomfort. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The allure of moral outrage

    • Lucas Keefer
    • 27 January 2022
    22 Comments

    It’s no secret that highly politicised issues seem to elicit strong emotional reactions, particularly feelings of intense anger. But not only are these feelings common, individuals seem actively motivated to seek out stories of tragedy, scandal, and injustice on a seemingly unending quest to feel moral outrage.

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  • RELIGION

    The makings of a saint

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 20 January 2022
    4 Comments

    On the fifteenth anniversary of Rutilio Grande’s death, I went to a memorial celebration in Aguilares. This crossroads town was the centre of the Jesuit local mission of which Grande had been part. I had already been struck by the affection with which everyone spoke of Rutilio Grande. In a society where any ministry to people who were poor exposed one to constant danger, it was natural to become hardened in order to survive. Rutilio Grande, however, was remembered and treasured for his vulnerability.

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  • MEDIA

    Best of 2021: Facebook unfriends Australia

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 11 January 2022

    Instead of retaining its control of a fruit market, or preserving an oil monopoly, Facebook harnesses another resource: data. Any regulator or sovereign state keen to challenge the way the Silicon Valley giant gathers, monetises and uses that data will face their ire.

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  • ECONOMICS

    Best of 2021: Why corporatism, not capitalism, is the root of social harm

    • David James
    • 04 January 2022

    There really is no such thing as ‘capitalism’ — or rather there are so many capitalisms that the word is altogether too imprecise to be useful. A much better term to identify the problems, even evils, of modern developed economies is ‘corporatism’. This can be precisely identified and its transgressions and general harm are getting worse.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Ownership

    • Jamie Dawe
    • 06 December 2021

    I own my proclivities and short comings / I own the transgressions of those which have inflicted wounds some unhealed /  I own the sublime moments of subjective joy / I own little but I am rich in compassion / I own not the land it owns me

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The sovereign good

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 25 November 2021
    20 Comments

    Attitudes towards truth have changed. Now we accept the idea that there are different sorts of truth: the phrases historical truth, narrative truth and emotional truth come trippingly off the lips of vast numbers of people. Then there are the complex notions of fantasy and fiction: we have long subscribed to the notion of novelists making up various ‘lies’ or fantasies in order to tell underlying truths about human nature. But we also have to accept, I think, that a gentleman’s word is no longer his bond.

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