Keywords: Pandemic

  • INTERNATIONAL

    Salvaging the shipwreck

    • Stephen Minas
    • 18 January 2022

    During his December journey to the eastern Mediterranean nations of Cyprus and Greece, Pope Francis drew attention to the conditions for irregular migration that result in thousands drowning at sea and many more languishing for years in camps. The International Organization for Migration records 23,150 missing migrants in the Mediterranean since 2014.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Our hopes and fears for 2022

    • Barry Gittins
    • 14 January 2022

    We’ve been in a pressure cooker, these past two years. More than a score of historians had memorably described 2020 as the sixth-most ‘stressful year ever’. Predictions and speculations look ahead; I looked at the past trends of the past two years and make these humble observations. With the stage set for dire times, here are six trends to look for in 2022. Here’s hoping.

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  • RELIGION

    Best of 2021: Atheists and God cancellers

    • Michael McGirr
    • 11 January 2022

    I must have time on my hands. I have been thinking about the difference between atheists and God cancellers. I love my atheist friends, of whom I am blessed with many. I relish the existential grist of our talks, the deep sense of substance and mutual respect. I also love the constant jokes. We keep each other honest. I enjoy a rich engagement with the history of thought and I believe we ennoble each other through the kind of trust that is prepared to talk about things that are off limits to others.

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  • ECONOMICS

    Best of 2021: Homelessness is caused not by poverty but by wealth

    • John Falzon
    • 04 January 2022

    When you put rising housing costs alongside stagnating wages, an alarming trend in normalising insecure work, persistent unemployment and underemployment, and statutory incomes that are going backwards in real terms, there’s good reason to be deeply worried about an increase in homelessness.

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  • MEDIA

    Best of 2021: More respectful Invasion Day coverage, but much work still to be done

    • Celeste Liddle
    • 04 January 2022

    It’s a tradition of mine to undertake my own “media watch” experiment following the annual Invasion Day rallies. I ended up being pleasantly surprised.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    There will be a next time. We must do better.

    • Cristy Clark
    • 16 December 2021

    Under Victoria’s Border Directions after 23 July, people in NSW, including Victorian residents, were effectively prevented from entering the state. Their only option was to request an exemption for a number of specified reasons including ‘attending a funeral or end of life event or returning home for health, wellbeing, care or compassionate reasons or for any other reason under a general discretion’.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    How social media turned the generation gap into an abyss

    • Nina Culley
    • 02 December 2021
    2 Comments

    Generations have historically operated in separate spaces, consuming, and interacting with the news differently. But social media has arguably deepened generational silos and echo chambers, altering our perception of world issues and most frighteningly of each other.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    How the illicit drug trade helped the spread of Covid

    • Stephen Lawrence
    • 16 November 2021
    1 Comment

    A truth that virtually dares not speak its name is that the spread of Covid 19 into regional New South Wales was largely a product of the illicit drug trade. Understanding why and how this occurred points in the direction of much needed social policy. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Inequality in a time of pandemic

    • Tim Dunlop
    • 15 November 2021
    5 Comments

    The experience of the Covid-19 pandemic has been like the aerosol used in those heist movies, where the cat burglar breaks into the museum and sprays the air to reveal the invisible lines of power that criss-cross the space between the door and cabinet where the treasure is kept.  

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  • RELIGION

    Assessing the Plenary: A work in progress

    • Geraldine Doogue
    • 15 November 2021
    38 Comments

    How do I assess our Plenary Council thus far? Or make sense of its related word-of-the-moment, synodality? With apologies to Churchill, dare I hope it is the ‘end of the beginning’? But of what precisely? A priest-friend distilled the challenge rather well last week to me: what would success look like?

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    TikTok Tourettes: The rise of social media-induced illness

    • Jarryd Bartle
    • 04 November 2021
    2 Comments

    For the past two years, there has been a dramatic uptick in young people (almost exclusively females) presenting with tic-like behaviours indicative of Tourette Syndrome to specialist clinics in Canada, the United States, the UK, Germany and Australia. The phenomena of tic-like behaviours developed rapidly over a course of hours or days, coined ‘rapid onset tic-like behaviours’ in one paper, appears to be a form of functional neurological disorder with an unusual cause: social media.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The promise of alchemy

    • David Rowland
    • 01 November 2021
    8 Comments

    Ben Jonson is one of the great English Renaissance playwrights but he can also be challenging for the modern reader. When I first came to Jonson some years ago, I attempted a comedy from 1610, The Alchemist. I soon felt out of my depth. Conceding defeat, I put the book aside and told myself that there would be some ‘other time’. This year in Melbourne, with the theatres closed, the streets largely deserted, and travel restrictions firmly in place, that ‘other time’ arrived.

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