2011 has been quite a year: the Arab Spring, the Fukushima meltdown, the London riots, the EU’s debt crisis and the Occupy Wall Street movement would be only the merest beginnings of a list of unforeseen and fascinating events. Australians in the news included cyber-rebel Julian Assange, the carbon-taxing Julia Gillard, and media oligarch Rupert Murdoch. At the Monthly, we’ve done our best to cover it all, and for dedicated readers who have finished the Summer Reading Special already and need more to while away the long summer afternoons we present the 10 of the best essays of the year free online.
Peter Conrad took aim at the Windsors (Falling Stars, February 2011).
Robert Manne’s 15,000-word essay on WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange was declared by no less an authority than Assange himself to be “easily the best article” written about him (The Cypherpunk Revolutionary, March 2011).
Paul Toohey travelled to the remote Indigenous communities of Ali Curung and Tennant Creek in the Northern Territory (Hard Times, March 2011):
Peter Robb met the formidable Marcia Langton (Who’s Afraid of Marcia Langton?, April 2011).
Anna Krien investigated the AFL’s dealings with sex offence scandals, in light of the revelations brought forward by ‘St Kilda school girl’ Kim Duthie (Out of Bounds, April 2011).
Andrew Charlton studied China’s latest Five-Year Plan (Bitter Fruits, June 2011).
Gail Bell reflected on what happens to animals in laboratories (In the Rat Room, July 2011).
Sally Neighbour delivered an in-depth personal profile of the influential Australian editor Chris Mitchell (The United States of Chris Mitchell, August 2011).
Annabel Crabb was nominated for a Walkley Award for her coverage of the prime minister (Prime Minister, Interrupted, August 2011).
Anne Summers set off a media storm with her profile of Andrew Bolt (The Bolt Factor, October 2011).
And if that doesn’t keep you busy, keep an eye on the website for online-only content and special features over summer.