Non Fiction

Turner posed a conundrum when he withheld nothing from his bequest to the nation. On the positive side, the unsorted contents gave room to later, highly flattering interpretations of Turner, which a collection pruned to the taste of the Victorians would not have supported. On the downside, the digestive processes of posterity took Turner away from his roots in ...

It’s absurd to pretend that we are or ever have been no more than exiled Europeans … forever condemned to inhabit some irrelevant, Antipodean limbo.’ This statement encapsulates Joan Kerr’s determination to rewrite established codes of Australian art history and to expand the lexicon of its cultural heritage ...

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Patrick McCaughey on 'Self-Portrait as a Young Man'

Patrick McCaughey
Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Roy Strong was appointed director of the National Portrait Gallery (NPG) in 1967 at the age of thirty-two. Today it would be astonishing to head one of the United Kingdom’s national collections at that age; five decades ago it was outrageous. Only Kenneth Clark at thirty was younger when he became director of the National Gallery. Strong’s ascent to the NP ...

O

ver fifty years have passed since I wrote my first tutorial essay in Politics, Philosophy, and Economics (PPE), or Modern Greats, as it was known in Oxford. The subject was the Great Reform Bill of 1832, which for the first time in over a century expanded the right to vote and redrew the electoral map of Great Britain ...

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Andrew Leigh reviews 'Hidden Innovation'

Andrew Leigh
Tuesday, 25 June 2013

According to one study cited in Stuart Cunningham’s book, there are two opposing groups of people: ‘Political Junkies (PJs)’ and ‘Big Brother fans (BBs)’. PJs think that it beggars belief that anyone could think Big Brother was useful. BBs say that politicians are unapproachable and out of touch. As an MP who used to quite enjoy watching Bi ...

More than History's Victims

Tim Rowse
Tuesday, 25 June 2013
Tim Rowse reviews the book of Marcia Langton’s 2013 Boyer Lectures on Aborigines and the resources boom.

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Mark Dober reviews 'Monet's Garden'

Mark Dober
Monday, 24 June 2013

Claude Monet as an emotive artist? Hitherto, I have viewed Monet’s painting – or at least Monet the Impressionist – as sensual but detached. Having seen Monet’s Garden at the National Gallery of Victoria, I am now of the view that the artist’s later painting (the exhibition focuses on the work made at Giverny from 1893 until the artist’s dea ...

Cassandra Atherton on 'Antipodes'

Cassandra Atherton
Monday, 27 May 2013

A polyphony of voices in Antipodes offers readers a textured view of literature from Australia and New Zealand. Contributors to this biannual journal are Australianists from all over the world. This globalisation is perhaps best evidenced by the inclusion of critics from Portugal, Slovenia, Lebanon, and Austria, writing incisively about Gail Jones, Indigenous ...

Jay Daniel Thompson reviews 'A Flower Between the Cracks'

Jay Daniel Thompson
Monday, 27 May 2013

A Flower Between the Cracks, South Australian writer Helen Sage’s first book, chronicles her experience of caring for a disabled child over a period of several years. Sage’s busy but comfortable life was changed irrevocably when her daughter, Jayne, was involved in a horrific car accident. Prior to this, Jayne had been a psychology honours student who lov ...

Ray Cassin on The Life of Pope Pius XII

Ray Cassin
Monday, 27 May 2013

Not the least portent of change in the Catholic Church since the Argentine Jesuit Jorge Bergoglio was elected as Pope Francis earlier this year has been mounting speculation that the new pontiff will disclose all documents in the Vatican archives concerning the most controversial of his twentieth-century predecessors, Eugenio Pacelli, who reigned as Pius XII from 19 ...

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