The Monthly | Australian politics, society & culture


Monday, January 17, 2022

‘Health and good order’

If Novak Djokovic is “a talisman of anti-vaccination sentiment”, what does that make George Christensen?




The stunted country

There can be no republic without constitutional recognition of Indigenous Australians


The fossil-fuel industry’s grip on Australian hearts and minds

Is there hope that public misconceptions of the importance of coal and gas can be overcome?


The unhinged pursuit of profit is destroying us

To undo the worst of neoliberalism we need to target need, rather than race or identity

National security

On Her Majesty’s secret disservice

The reporter who uncovered the truth about Kim Philby, the 20th century’s most infamous spy, and his warnings for democratic society


The artist making sculpture for penguins

How creating sculpture for animals is transforming wildlife conservation and the art world

Online Latest


‘Girl from the North Country’

Weaving Bob Dylan songs into a story of Depression-era hardship, Conor McPherson’s musical speaks to the broken America of today


‘The Worst Person in the World’

Renate Reinsve is exceptional in Joachim Trier’s satisfying Nordic rom-com

State politics

Family’s grief compounded by WA’s hard border

The awful predicament of a Melbourne family unable to bring home their son’s body shows the callousness of WA’s border policy


The best of 2021 on screen

This year may have been difficult to live through, but it produced an extraordinary crop of films

The Nation Reviewed

Indigenous rights

The truth about truth-telling

Revisiting trauma is not the road to justice for Aboriginal people

History of Australia

Did Federation compromise our democracy?

How the advent of Australia’s national government separated power from people and place


Declaration of independents

The success of Indi MP Helen Haines points to more non-aligned voices in parliament


Echidna poo has changed our understanding of human evolution

Citizen science is not only helping echidna conservation, but changing how we think about evolution


The Vox Owl

A homemade algorithm chooses every book I read

How a monumental to-read list turned into a spreadsheet that randomly selects books

Arts & Letters


Oh, carols!

The music of Christmas, from the manger to the chimney


Abbotsford I

New poetry, after lockdowns


Final sentence: Gerald Murnane’s ‘Last Letter to a Reader’

The essay anthology that will be the final book from one of Australia’s most idiosyncratic authors


New kid on the block: The Kid Laroi

How Australia has overlooked its biggest global music star, an Indigenous hip-hop prodigy


The Bond market: ‘Dune’ and ‘No Time To Die’

Blockbuster season begins with a middling 007 and a must-see sci-fi epic



‘Crossroads’ by Jonathan Franzen

The acclaimed US author’s latest novel is a 1971 church drama modelled on ‘Middlemarch’



The US drama about teen plane-crash survivors is a heady mix of folk horror and high-school betrayal

In Light of Recent Events


Let’s colour our post-lockdown existential crisis summer by numbers!



The Sound of 2021

Today, we look back at the news events that defined 2021 - in sound.



Australia detained him, but these Australians are trying to set him free

Assistant professor Dr Laura Beth Bugg on the campaign to free refugees from Manus Island and find them a permanent home.

HOST Ruby Jones
GUEST Laura Beth Bugg


Scott Morrison vs. the Liberal Party

Mike Seccombe on the real reason Scott Morrison wanted to enlist Gladys Berejiklian, and what it reveals about the Prime Minister’s weakening authority in his home state.

HOST Ruby Jones
GUEST Mike Seccombe