Murdoch’s Culture Wars
Murdoch’s Culture Wars

Rupert Murdoch is a contradictory man. About the newspaper business, anyway, and it’s possible his lusty ego can reconcile them, but I cannot.

2012
2012

It was not a good year for writers or language, and a particularly bloody one for journalists. According to Reporters Without Borders, it was the deadliest on record since its first yearly report in 1995. 88 journalists killed, 2,000 threatened or attacked…

Closure
Closure

“To write poetry after Auschwitz,” wrote German philosopher Theodore Adorno, “is barbaric.” Adorno’s famous decree was a sort of melancholic resignation a belief that along with six million people, the Holocaust had expunged meaning itself, and exposed the lie…

Oasis v Fleur
Oasis v Fleur

It happened again in university. It was only natural. As we were allowed in high school, for first year poetry class we were permitted to bring in song lyrics when we read aloud our favourite poems. And as it was in high school, most brought songs.

Panic!
Panic!

Like many of you, my real education at high-school occurred outside the classroom. I learnt about suicide when a girl threw herself off an overpass, and learnt about the ineffectual oddities of local politics when that overpass was caged, and the one 200 metres…

Chicken Littles
Chicken Littles

You probably missed it amid the rancour, as Parliament slunk towards its summer adjournment and somewhere got stuck in mutually assured distraction. Or perhaps it was eclipsed by the slush fund story that is, in many ways, a meta-story…

Dispatch from Perth
Dispatch from Perth

I’m in Perth researching a book about murder, meaning and the colourful constellation system of justice. The institutions that formally comprise it, and the variety of individuals involuntarily thrown into it. What are their roles? How do they each make sense…

The Press Gallery
The Press Gallery

So I’m late to the Gillard Speech party, or at least the ensuing commentary about the commentary. So shoot me. I didn’t much like the party, filled with cowboys and girls, their guns loaded with smug certitude and me just packing an old-fashioned…

Comedy & Taboo
Comedy & Taboo

In July, American comic Tig Notaro was diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer. This was just the latest splash of fate’s bilge water: in previous months, Notaro had suffered a break-up, a bacterial disease and the sudden death of her mother.

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