Meating diversity: a progressive charade

Type
Article
Category
Culture
Nationalism

This is what Klein would call a ‘race toward weightlessness’, a key tenet of contemporary corporatism, which holds that the real work of companies is marketing, not manufacturing – that they are in the business of creating images rather than things. Howie’s claim that ‘lamb is the nation’s favourite meat’ is demonstrably false, but it is the idea itself that matters, framed as it is by language that is both inclusive (‘lamb stands for unity’) and nationalistic (‘Australia is the greatest country on earth’).

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this one
Type
Article
Category
Class
Culture

Who are you calling a hipster?

The spate of recent attacks on certain Footscray businesses by perpetrators as yet unknown feels quixotic: smashing in a few windows and spray-paining ‘fuck off hipster scum’, or throwing a bag of rotting meat at a business, cannot be expected to reverse the tide of gentrification.

Such actions misunderstand the relationship between gentrification and hipsterdom, construing as they do hipsters as active agents of gentrification rather than their presence as an epiphenomenon of it.

943511-120114-1967-referendum
Type
Review
Category
Indigenous Australia
Music

Music in the key of Yes

The 1967 referendum remains a watershed moment in Australia’s civil rights history. On the 50th anniversary of the result, that saw over ninety per cent of Australians vote in favour of including First Nations people in the Commonwealth constitution, a special performance will pay homage to the era and its activists at the Sydney Festival.

'Smoking'
Type
Reflection
Category
Sexual assault

Crying wolf

For someone dealing with the grief, shame and anger after a sexual assault, it can be especially hard when one’s peers and relatives are the ones choosing not to believe them. I know this because I write from the point-of-view of a woman who has not been believed about being raped, and also as someone who chose not to believe another.

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Type
Polemic
Category
Inequality
Precarity

Dole-bludgers, leaners and other neoliberal fantasies

These cuts are usually defended by the cultural construction of the ‘bludger’: a largely mythological figure who prefers a life on welfare over working and who needs to be discouraged from their idleness by the formulation of harsh laws surrounding the eligibility of Centrelink recipients, already struggling, in financial and emotional distress, far below the poverty line.

emerging ed post
Type
Announcement
Category
Editing
News

We need a guest fiction editor

Every year, Overland publishes several online editions showcasing work by new and emerging writers. An opportunity exists for an emerging editor to work on one of these online fiction editions, to be published in June 2017.

Statue-of-David
Type
Polemic
Category
Art
Sexism
Writing

Embedded misogyny: the academic erasure of women

At this conference the plenary speaker was cloaked in impressive accolades: a Professor from the UK, a translator of and collaborator with a renowned French theorist, and the author of sixteen books. Most of his work looks at cultural fields, the ways these are created, and the dynamics within them. It looked like it would be an interesting talk.

It wasn’t.

aboriginal-australia-map
Type
Article
Category
Activism
Debate
writers festivals

Acknowledgement

Indeed, the ‘janitorial ring’ of ‘traditional custodians of the land’ of which Flournoy complains in her article is part of the symbolic problem she later raises: the practice has become routine, rehearsed. I would say the practice has become strategically corrupted: pithy Acknowledgements, heartfelt and perfunctory alike, are equally capable of trying to dislodge Indigenous belonging when they suggest Indigenous relationship to land is ‘traditional’, managerial and ‘custodial’, or position our claim to sovereignty as ‘past-based’, ‘non-possessive’ and merely reparative.

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Type
Article
Category
Politics
The law

The poison of prohibition

‘We should not underestimate the harm that illicit drugs do everyday every day in our community,’ he has stated. A crucial aspect that Dr Gannon ignores is that harm can be significantly heightened through the very act of prohibition. Take for example the prohibition era of America in which alcohol was banned. Alcohol poisoning became more prevalent among drinkers due to two main reasons.

SF17_The_Season_EventHero_1240x460-1
Type
Review
Category
Art

50,000 years of story

There are stories threaded throughout from Maynard’s childhood in northern Tasmania, and older stories still – traditional stories that have carried over millennia. The play is hotly tipped to be a festival standout; it’s a decidedly more direct path to recognition than is usual for a first-time playwright, particularly a young Aboriginal one.

please_like_me_josh_mum_dating
Type
Article
Category
Culture
Television

Mothers in television

Mothers are so ubiquitous in popular culture so as to be invisible. Cultural depictions of mothers are still, by and large, functional – women solely defined by their relationships to others, rather than full subjects with desires and anxieties of their own. Thankfully though, this is slowly changing, and we are beginning to see more nuanced representations of mothers. Here are five mothers who pushed the boundaries of maternal representation this year.

Mr-Darcy
Type
Article
Category
Reading
Sexism

Men who love Jane Austen

A chance encounter with a review on Goodreads has led me to discover a whole new world – men who love Jane Austen. The review was for Pride and Prejudice, and it was very concise.

I was forced to read this by my future wife. I was not, however, forced to give it 5 stars.

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Type
Essay
Category
Feminism
Science

Using/abusing fembots

Robots are, of course, another kind of living doll. One of the first cinematic depictions was the seductress ‘Maria’ in the 1927 film Metropolis. For as long as we have been imagining intelligent humanoid machines, we have been imagining them as sexualised females. From Apple’s iPhone assistant Siri to the mechanised attendants at Japan’s first robot-staffed hotel, a disproportionate percentage of artificial intelligence (AI) systems have female personas. These AIs tend to perform jobs that are traditionally associated with women: they are maids, personal assistants, museum guides and so on.

Screen Shot 2016-12-12 at 6.00.31 pm
Type
Essay
Category
Activism
Violence

The antis

A vote in favour would endorse the government’s attempt to conscript Australian men to fight on the battlefields of Europe; a vote against would repudiate the war plans. The fact that the vote took place at all was of great significance: nowhere else was such a crucial measure determined by an act of mass democracy. More extraordinary still, Australians voted no.