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  • EDUCATION

    Business thinking is death to the humanities

    • David James
    • 16 April 2019
    25 Comments

    Here's a suggestion. In order to halt the seemingly inexorable destruction of the humanities in our secondary schools, we should immediately sack any senior Education Department bureaucrat who has an MBA. Or perhaps they can be forced to reapply, unsuccessfully, for their old jobs. They like that kind of thing.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    AOC speech not racist, just code switching

    • Yen-Rong Wong
    • 12 April 2019
    6 Comments

    US congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was accused by some of 'verbal blackface' due to her manner in a speech last week. But she wasn't being racist — she was code switching, defined by linguists as the act of moving back and forth between two or more languages or dialects. It's something I know a lot about from experience.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Vegan protesters reject righteous domination

    • Cristy Clark
    • 11 April 2019
    16 Comments

    The concerns around white veganism and its blindness (and worse) to other systems of domination and oppression are completely legitimate and deserve serious attention. But they do not fundamentally undermine the central ethical arguments of veganism.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Where is Australia's Jacinda Ardern?

    • Megan Graham
    • 11 April 2019
    10 Comments

    Oh, what I would give to be able to vote for an Australian Ardern, or to see either major party boldly back a woman leader with the grit and humanity exhibited by AOC. Because the 'same-old' bungling status quo of Australian politics is failing us. The lack of support for women looking to become tomorrow's leaders is failing us.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Kafka in Australia: the trial of Witness K

    • Susan Connelly
    • 06 April 2019
    18 Comments

    Our own version of Kafka's The Trial is being played out under our very noses. 'Witness K' and his lawyer Bernard Collaery have been charged with making known Australian state secrets in connection with ASIS spying on Timor-Leste. The similarities between the plights of Kafka's Josef K and Witness K do not end with their names.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Blind injustice on the job hunt circuit

    • Casey Hyde
    • 02 April 2019
    4 Comments

    When I attended a rare job interview, I would put a bow tie around my guide dog's neck to deflect some of the heat off me. The interviewer would ask questions that were of a chatty, personal nature — everything except questions about my qualifications. The only thing that seems to be holding me back is my vision impairment.

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  • RELIGION

    No shortcuts to reform after church abuse crisis

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 01 April 2019
    75 Comments

    The sentencing of Pell highlighted the dismay and soul-searching among Catholics at sex abuse and its devastation of the lives of victims and their families. It also brought home the depth of the crisis caused by clerical sex abuse in the Catholic Church. Although it still challenges understanding, a historical parallel may help illuminate it.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Coming and going in Greece and Australia

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 28 March 2019
    9 Comments

    That leaden weight in my chest is back. My self-diagnosis is heartache, and once upon a time I thought I'd get to the stage at which this heaviness would leave me for good, but I know now that this is never going to happen, at least not as long as I am engaged in my back-and-forth movements between Greece and Australia.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Echoes of Auschwitz in Manus memoir

    • Brian Matthews
    • 27 March 2019
    6 Comments

    Like Auschwitz survivor Primo Levi in his works, Behrouz Boochani's No Friend but the Mountains exemplifies among many other things 'the possibilities of human decency' despite the Manus prison's squalor. Like George Orwell in another time and place, he is buoyed by hope in irrepressible nature.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Hypocrisy in Australian-Turkish chest puffing

    • Justin Glyn
    • 25 March 2019
    7 Comments

    The stoush between Erdogan (who said New Zealanders and Australians visiting Turkey would leave it 'in coffins ') and Morrison (all options to erase this insult were 'on the table') amounts to less than meets the eye. But it speaks volumes about what a toxic brew hypocrisy and the prospect of a forthcoming election can produce.

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  • ECONOMICS

    Charity is no substitute for justice

    • John Falzon
    • 22 March 2019
    13 Comments

    The work of charities, including the generous work of volunteers, should not be a means of letting governments off the hook. People do not want to have to rely on charity; they want to be able to count on justice. And charity is never a substitute for justice. But it becomes so when governments abrogate their responsibilities.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    NZ shooter: The myth of Australian values

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 19 March 2019
    24 Comments

    Penny Wong dismissed Tarrant as un-Australian, a dangerous point given that Australian values have been rather flexible in their deployment. The same treatment is reserved for Anning: 'He does not represent who we are.' The painful truth is that Anning and Tarrant are representative of an aspect of Australian national identity.

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