Monthly Wire

The Monthly Classics

It has been quite a year: there was the hard-fought US election, Mary Poppins duelled with Voldemort at the London Olympics opening ceremony, the Syrian conflict raged and Hurricane Sandy wrought chaos; Rupert Murdoch suffered from a hazy memory and Julian Assange started his campaign for senate from the Ecuadorian embassy in London. Meanwhile, closer to home politics made for high drama: the leadership challenge; 'wall-gate'; the Craig Thomson, Peter Slipper and AWU controversies and Julia Gillard's ‘misogyny speech’.

At the Monthly, we’ve done our best to cover it all, and for dedicated readers who have already finished the Summer Issue and need more to while away the long hot afternoons, we present a free collection of classic pieces online. Here, we have compiled the best reads from the Monthly, SlowTV, the Shortlist Daily and PoliticOz to help you ease into the New Year. Enjoy!


Top Monthly Essays of 2012

In 2012, the media struggled, news suffered and ephemera triumphed, while the Monthly maintained its dedication to essays and long-form journalism. From Wayne Swan’s broadside at vested interests to Catherine Ford’s expedition with Cape York’s Family Responsibilities Commission, the Monthly told the stories and argued the issues that made the year.


Top SlowTV Videos of 2012

SlowTV presents an editor’s selection of this year’s best videos.


Top Reads of 2012

Ten of the best reads from around the world as featured in the Shortlist Daily.

Best Australian Political Writing 2012

Last May saw the launch of PoliticOz, the Monthly’s daily roundup of the nation’s political action. In a dramatic and often chaotic parliamentary year, PoliticOz pointed out the most clear-eyed commentators.

Best Satire of 2012

Ten of the most amusing reads of 2012 from the Shortlist Daily.

Top Political Satire of 2012

An editor’s selection of ten amusing political items from 2012 by PoliticOz.

Best Image Galleries of 2012

Ten of the best image galleries of 2012 from around the world as selected by the Shortlist Daily.

Best Australian Political Cartoons 2012

Our selection of highlights from Best Australian Political Cartoons 2012, published by Scribe.

The Best of Australian Arts 2012

For the Monthly’s second arts issue, ten critics give their picks for the best of 2012.

One Term in the Life of Julia Gillard

Two years is a long time in politics, especially if your name’s Julia Gillard. The Monthly has seen the rolling crises as well as the successes: from Gillard’s inability to sell her ‘story’ following the leadership coup, to the Thomson, AWU and Slipper affairs; from the policy reforms to the famous ‘misogyny speech’, when for so many people the Real Julia emerged at last. Here’s how the Monthly has seen the Gillard prime ministership.

Murdoch Madness

The saga of the Murdoch empire has always held a hypnotic appeal for the Monthly’s writers. So much political influence and control of information rests in the hands of this sprawling, secretive multinational outfit that we ignore their machinations at our peril. In the wake of the UK Leveson inquiry’s damning report, we look back on how it came to this.

Obama: The Story So Far

Barack Obama has long fascinated the Monthly’s writers, and this year we found out that he still does the same to the American public. In the wake of his decisive victory over Republican challenger Mitt Romney, we chart Obama’s story from Judith Brett’s early 2007 notes on the Democratic hopeful to Noel Pearson’s take on his racial politics, Peter Conrad’s recent profile and all points in between.

Read on

Image from ‘Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist’

‘Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist’, an incomplete portrait

This nostalgic documentary about the eminent designer raises more questions than it answers

Image from ‘House of Cards’

The magnificently messy ‘House of Cards’

The show that made Netflix a major player comes to a satisfying and ludicrous end

Image of Scott Morrison and the ScoMo Express

The ScoMo Express backfires

The PM’s farcical bus tour cements spin over substance as his brand

Image from ‘Suspiria’

Twisted sisters: Luca Guadagnino’s ‘Suspiria’

Sentimentality ruins the magic of this otherwise unsettling and actively cruel film