Anna Krien

A young Aboriginal girl wears an abaya because she wants to see how it feels to inhabit someone else’s experience, someone else’s history. An exiled Iraqi musician plays a piano in a shopping centre in suburban Melbourne. Native Americans protesting the construction of a pipeline on their traditional lands are shot at with water cannons and rubber bullets. Count ...

Whether the focus is on Japanese whaling or the slaughter of livestock in Indonesia, the Australian public has strong views on how animals should be treated abroad – less so when the problem is closer to home. Anna Krien’s Quarterly Essay is an incisive narrative account of our ‘nuanced and often contradictory relationship’ with animals: ranging from the live cattle trade to our use of primates in science, to our attempts to control native wildlife populations through cyclical breeding and culling.

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On the day that I finished reading Into the Woods, I opened the newspaper to a report that Gunns was withdrawing from native forest logging to base its future business entirely on plantation-grown timber. Given that Gunns controls almost eighty-five per cent of the wood products traded in Tasmania, this has raised hopes of an end to the decades-old forest w ...