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Section: Arts And Culture

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The exile of place and time

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 16 June 2022
    3 Comments

    Writers are not only preoccupied, among other things, with the concept of place, but also with the matter of time and its passing. Novelist L.P. Hartley famously wrote that the past is a foreign country: they do things differently there. Cretan Nikos Kazantzakis considered that ‘the face of Greece is a palimpsest bearing twelve successive inscriptions,’ and he went on to list them, from the 1930s, when he wrote these words, to the Stone Age.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Wit, irony and the Australian vernacular: Remembering Brian Matthews

    • John Schumann
    • 15 June 2022
    4 Comments

    Most of us, when pushed, can name a couple of teachers who had a profound influence on our lives. For me, Brian Matthews was one such teacher. I enrolled in English at Flinders University in 1972. On asking the enrolling officer whether anybody was ‘doing anything about Lawson’, I was directed to the office of Brian Matthews, a recent appointment to the English Department. ‘I hear you know something about Lawson,’ I said, leaning in his doorway.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The true quiet Australians: 10 of the best of Brian Matthews

    • Brian Matthews
    • 09 June 2022
    2 Comments

    Brian Matthews, academic, award-winning columnist and biographer, and Australia's foremost scholar on Henry Lawson and his mother Louisa, died last Thursday 2 June following complications related to lymphoma, at the age of 86. Brian first wrote for Eureka Street in February, 2002 and continued to contribute his monthly column for 20 years.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    From the archives: Dad's army

    • Brian Matthews
    • 09 June 2022

    It was Christmas morning of... many years ago. I was about eight years old but, despite my advanced age, I remained a dogged believer in Father Christmas. This belief was maintained in the face of cynicism and derision from the youthful toughs I consorted with and despite my own unspoken qualms in moments of inconvenient rationality. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The book corner: Class in Australia

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 03 June 2022
    1 Comment

    As I was reading the illuminating contributions to Class in Australia  I had to confront my attitudes to Marxist analysis, to the claims of sociology, social work and psychology to be sciences, to the relative importance of inequality based on wealth, gender and race, and to any claim that canonises individual choice while claiming to be value free.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Unsent letter

    • Jamie Dawe
    • 02 June 2022

    It was wrong to expect her to wade through the river of sadness of family obligations / Right person, wrong timing and I turned away / I have sought to explain myself by searching / 15 years later it is seemly to vanquish the letter / Guaranteed, she found someone somewhere better.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Longing for the multiverse

    • Cherie Gilmour
    • 02 June 2022
    1 Comment

    At a time when a second baby meant my own choices were fading into the background, I thought a lot about Nora and her life-jumping. What if I’d had kids later? What if I’d finished that degree? What if I’d taken that job? What if, what if, what if… The multiverse casts a web of different lives, all endlessly diverging like branches from a tree. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Retracing the tracks

    • Arnold Zable
    • 26 May 2022
    3 Comments

    Election day. Mid-afternoon. 21 May 2022. I make my way to Canning Street, Carlton North. Stop by my childhood home, a single-fronted terrace, the neighbourhood of my youth. In the 1950s election day was a happy day in that rented house, conveniently close to the factories of Brunswick, and the Victoria Market where my father was a stallholder.  My parents loved the three-block walk to the polling booths, located in Lee Street, our local primary school. They were elated at having the right to vote. From where they came, this right had been brutally taken from them.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The content of our winter

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 24 May 2022
    1 Comment

    Next week we officially enter winter. The associations of winter are largely negative. They mourn the loss of the summer that has passed. For that reason it may seem incongruous that winter should begin immediately after a Federal Election campaign that ended with the excitement of the people’s choice of a new Government. The potential for a new beginning might fit better with spring.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The challenges of self-assessment

    • Emma Wilkins
    • 17 May 2022
    5 Comments

    I’d been thinking about my own productivity as an employee, as a freelancer, as a parent; about what left me feeling satisfied, worthy, competent or guilty, unproductive, unfulfilled. I’m convinced we should value people for who they are, not what they do, or don’t or cannot do. And yet I catch myself, thinking about, talking about, how much I have or haven’t done on any given day; forgetting to reflect on how I have behaved, on the kind of parent, wife, colleague, friend that I’ve been.

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  • 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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