Australian politics, society & culture

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Amanda Lohrey

Amanda Lohrey is a writer. Her books include Reading Madame Bovary, The Philosopher’s Doll, The Reading GroupCamille’s Bread and A Short History of Richard Kline.

Articles by this author

Image of Wrest Point casino, Sandy Bay, Tasmania
James Boyce’s ‘Losing Streak’ investigates how one family came to rule the state’s poker-machine industry
Tasmania got gamed
As it happens, my first vote was in 1968 on a referendum proposal by the Tasmanian Labor government to introduce the nation’s first legal casino, on the site of Federal Hotels’...
 
Trans. Donald Barry and Stephen Muecke; Reaktion Books; $40
‘Appetites for Thought’ by Michel Onfray
The French philosopher Michel Onfray is best known in Australia for his lively polemic The Atheist Manifesto and his visit to the Sydney Writers’ Festival in 2007. A self-styled...
 
Richard Di Natale and a new leadership team hit the mainstream
The new Greens
The Tasmanian era is over. Since its formation as a national party in 1992, the Australian Greens has been led by Tasmanian senators: first Bob Brown and then Christine Milne....
 
Gambler and MONA founder David Walsh has written a book
A welcome contradiction
The Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) in Hobart is an underground labyrinth, often dimly lit, but its founder’s domestic apartment is a glassy sunlit box, the light so bright I...
 
How the Liberal Party has exiled its last reasonable man
Malcolm Turnbull, the prince of moderation
During his concession speech after the 1987 federal election, the then Opposition leader John Howard remarked that in the aftermath of a ferocious election campaign it was...
 
The Palmer United Party are anti-politics wildcards in Parliament
Clive Palmer the trickster
Voters in the United States are accustomed to eccentric plutocrats seeking to enter representative politics – Ross Perot, a presidential candidate in 1992 and 1996, is a...
 
The ALP, the Libs, the Greens, the split
The Tasmanian election
In Tasmanian politics, there is an obsession that the Liberal and Labor parties share: if only the Greens would go away. It’s like some pesky virus from another planet, and...
 
Subtropical beech forest, northern NSW © Paul Curtis
The hero of this story is a tree or rather a species of tree
Germaine Greer’s ‘White Beech’
A sense of a country violated is at the heart of the Australian environment movement. The decision in 1972 to flood the unique bioregion of Tasmania’s Lake Pedder in the...
 
Andrew Wilkie’s re-election campaign
In the 2007 election, Andrew Wilkie was a Greens senate candidate, no. 2 on the Tasmanian ticket behind Bob Brown. On a campaign drive around the state, Wilkie stopped overnight...
 
The Greens chase the farming vote
In 1997, Merrill Lynch executive Peter Whish-Wilson stood at the window of his office in the South Tower of New York’s World Trade Center and decided to give up his career...
 
Janet Malcolm’s 'Forty-one False Starts'
The Queen of Not-nice
Philip Roth would later famously declare that fiction couldn’t keep up with the new reality while orthodox journalism came under attack as the medium of a phony objectivity...
 
Maxine McKew, Kevin Rudd and others on Rudd's final morning as Prime Minister, 24 June 2010. © Alan Porritt/AAP
Maxine McKew’s ‘Tales from the Political Trenches’ and James Button’s ‘Speechless: A Year In My Father’s Business’
After the game
In these two absorbing political memoirs one finds a common theme, that of the professional observer who decides to turn activist. It must occur to any journalist who covers the...
 
Tony Abbott, 23 March 2011. © Alan Porritt/AAP
Gillard and the press gallery
A Matter of Context
Thank you very much, Deputy Speaker, and I rise to oppose the motion moved by the Leader of the Opposition. And in so doing I say … I will not be lectured about sexism and...
 
Illustration by Jeff Fisher.
Lawrence Krauss and arse-kicking physics
The big nothing
It’s a cold Hobart night and a snow cloud is drifting across Mount Wellington as I make my way to a lecture by the celebrated theoretical physicist Lawrence Krauss. Krauss is on...
 
Schoolies in a Surfers Paradise polling booth at the 2007 federal election. © Fiona Hamilton / Newspix
Comment: Australian Democracy and the Right to Party
News footage of Egyptians queuing patiently for hours to exercise their first free vote in decades is a sobering sight. Even more sobering is the whining of those Australians who...
 
Illustration by Jeff Fisher.
Wim Delvoye at MONA
The Art of Ideas
The phenomenon that is Hobart’s Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) is a Plato’s cave of multi-layered subterranean space where shadows of the real in the form of...
 
David Walsh at the MONA site, 2010. © Museum of Old and New Art
David Walsh and Tasmania’s Museum of Old and New Art
High priest
The Moorilla estate is set on a peninsula of sandstone cliffs that juts out into the Derwent estuary on Hobart’s northern fringe. Framed to the south-west by the looming grandeur...
 
The absent heart
I am a restless and disgruntled visitor to museums, not much interested in the engineered detail of an artefact but more in how it fits into the big picture. When I see the 1785...
 

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