section: Arts And Culture

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Migrant factory worker's story

    • Selected poems
    • 06 August 2013
    1 Comment

    The factory thrust its bloody quota past her six days a week, and she did what she had to. The gloves and boots and heavy denim became first and last lines of defence. She lost a thumb once, then a fingertip a year later. Language didn't come into it. She got sick and sacked in the same fortnight, then lay doggo for a decade.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Flawed humanity of a police shooting martyr

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 01 August 2013
    3 Comments

    On 1 January 2009, police in Oakland, California shot dead an unarmed African-American man, 22-year-old Oscar Grant. The event sparked riots, and renewed tensions around race and debates about police procedure. Underlying this politicised context is the story of a young father and former drug dealer who was trying, with mixed success, to turn his life around.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    We're all boat people after all

    • Brian Doyle
    • 31 July 2013
    7 Comments

    Boat people, job thieves, welfare cheats — I've heard the insults, and the greed, fear and incipient blood behind those words. Rather than snarl at the crude selfishness behind our national fear of immigrants, I stare at my family annals, and read about the lanky children who came here from Ireland, utterly poor, desperately hungry, and ferociously eager.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Bless the troublemakers

    • Libby Hart
    • 30 July 2013
    1 Comment

    Fingers dipped into holy water, the grain of the cross drawn on skin. 'God speaks in silence,' he said with such certainty, as if he knew all things.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Angry ghost of Gillard past

    • Barry Gittins and Jen Vuk
    • 26 July 2013
    10 Comments

    What we have here is a memoir of a woman wronged. And by that I don't mean our former PM. Well, not exclusively, anyway. Journalist Kerry-Anne Walsh may deny either a relationship with Gillard or an outright allegiance, but they're connected where it counts: at the heart of injustice. Both have been let down by a party that has seen much, much better days.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Exploiting Van Nguyen

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 25 July 2013
    7 Comments

    Many Australians feel ownership of Nguyen's story, who was executed for drug trafficking in Singapore in 2005. Khoa Do more than most Australian filmmakers has the moral authority to tell that story without being accused of exploitation. Yet it is hard not to sympathise with the objections of Nguyen's family to Do's SBS new miniseries. Which mother would want public property made of her private grief?

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Journey to the margins

    • Marlene Marburg and Grant Fraser
    • 23 July 2013
    2 Comments

    They follow a star, stirring light in their hearts more than the sky, to the margins, where even goats lose their footing. They make a silent journey, growing in hope that the child within and the Child without will recognise each other.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Conversations about a damaged marriage

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 18 July 2013

    Jesse and Celine head out to enjoy a final night in Greece. In conversation, the fray and fineness of their relationship are revealed. Discussions of philosophy and art illuminate ways in which their individual worldviews impact on their lived reality. They land in a hotel, where the conversation goes from intimate, to pragmatic, to something akin to exorcism.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Bookworm skinned by kin and Kindle

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 17 July 2013
    23 Comments

    Knowing I was going to spend six months in Greece, I arranged for a trunk of books to be sent over. My illiterate mother-in-law was stupefied: 'So many books! Can't you sell some of them?' I should have known she'd react like this, as during her one visit to Melbourne she'd told me roundly that too much reading was the cause of my prematurely grey hair and my need to wear glasses.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Trying hard not to die

    • Belinda Rule
    • 16 July 2013
    1 Comment

    Green and stony hills rise like mesa, thin and steep, like the holes in Swiss cheese inverted. A narrow road winds up and down and around. We have to hurry. My tires plough the verge: dirt falls to nothing ... Someone else is in the car: who?

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Portrait of an empty marriage and absent God

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 11 July 2013
    2 Comments

    The sense of God as absent is almost suffocating, but is relieved by the hope that if God is absent from buildings and institutions he may be present 'outside' and in relationships. Father Quintana comes into his own when he comes into contact with the needs of ordinary people, as he prays in voiceover 'Christ before me … behind me' and so on.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Lament of the 21st century man

    • Michael McVeigh
    • 10 July 2013
    10 Comments

    His body itself is a symbol of his inherited power and privilege. He hears women talk about being afraid to go out at night alone. He sees the great strides women have made in the workforce, yet sits in management meetings where nine out of ten leaders are men. He sees bikini clad women on his television screen and feels guilty at admiring their bodies.

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