Australian politics, society & culture



Screen time, all the time. Image of child looking at screen
The Monthly Essays

Screen time, all the time

Do smart devices in classrooms help kids learn?
Russell Marks
Lessons from camels. © Juniors Bildarchiv GmbH / Alamy

Lessons from camels

A ten-day camel trek through the South Australian outback. With your parents.
Robert Skinner

Back to where I came from

A trip to Iran brings a senator face to face with the life that could have been
Sam Dastyari
The Nation Reviewed

Not-so-Tasmanian tiger

The thylacine is thought be extinct. Might it still be found in mainland Australia?
Anthony Ham
The Nation Reviewed

Debt. Recovery.

A parliamentary committee’s report on the Centrelink robo-debt debacle makes for damning reading
Alex McKinnon
The Monthly Essays

The art of dependency

The NDIS promised choice and control
Micheline Lee

Most Popular

  1. The Monthly Essays
    The art of dependency
    The NDIS promised choice and control
    Micheline Lee
    The art of dependency. Artwork by Micheline Lee
  2. Comment
    To walk in two worlds
    The Uluru Statement is a clear and urgent call for reform
    Megan Davis
    To walk in two worlds. Illustration
  3. The Monthly Essays
    Network error
    What will be the cost of a patchwork NBN?
    Paddy Manning
    Network error. Image of a loading icon
  4. The Monthly Essays
    The boomer supremacy
    The dominance of baby boomers is becoming total
    Richard Cooke
    The boomer supremacy. © SolStock
  5. The Nation Reviewed
    AFL 2017 in names only
    The only player analysis you’ll need this footy season
    Hugh Robertson
    AFL 2017 in names only. Illustration


The Nation Reviewed
Foresters of the skies
The grey-headed flying fox faces a perilous nightly journey
Arnold Zable
Country needs people. Image of Yarrkalpa – Hunting Ground, Parnngurr Area, 2013
The Monthly Essays
Country needs people
Mapping and minding shared lands
Kim Mahood
Nature 2.0. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
Nature 2.0
Saving Australia’s smallest freshwater fish
Nicole Gill
The tallest tree. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
The tallest tree
Brett Mifsud is saving Australia’s tallest trees
Patrick Witton


Killing our media. Facebook CEO and chairman Mark Zuckerberg at the APEC CEO Summit 2016 in Lima, Peru
The Monthly Essays
Killing our media
The impact of Facebook and the tech giants
Nick Feik
Fairfax is under threat again
Quick action is needed if public-interest journalism is to survive
Ranald Macdonald
Is Michelle Guthrie tuned in to the ABC?. Image of Michelle Guthrie
The Monthly Essays
Is Michelle Guthrie tuned in to the ABC?
The new managing director’s vision isn’t clear
Margaret Simons
Get your Wiki on. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
Get your Wiki on
Wikiclub NT is raising the Northern Territory’s profile on Wikipedia
Oscar Schwartz


The Medicine
A pain in the tooth
What happened to Australia’s publicly funded dental system?
Karen Hitchcock
A few questions before you go
How do we decide how we die?
Steven Amsterdam
One step beyond
What would it take to modernise Alcoholics Anonymous?
Jenny Valentish
The snip. © Eraxion / iStock
The Monthly Essays
The snip
It’s a simple procedure, but having a vasectomy can raise questions of masculinity and equality
Ceridwen Dovey


Grandfathering the Australian dream. Image of a broken key
The Monthly Essays
Grandfathering the Australian dream
House prices, insecure work and growing debts … Who can afford a stake in today’s society?
Richard Denniss
The shorter working week can work
It’s time to take the four-day work week seriously
Emma Dawson
The new black. Image of a restaurant
The Monthly Essays
The new black
The overworked, underpaid, cash-in-hand worker is becoming increasingly common
Ann Arnold
Arrested development. Image of James Packer
The Monthly Essays
Arrested development
James Packer has been down, but he’s not out
Richard Cooke


True history of the Clarke gang. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
True history of the Clarke gang
Infamous bushrangers of Braidwood, New South Wales
Sam Vincent
Tasmania got gamed. Image of Wrest Point casino, Sandy Bay, Tasmania
Arts & Letters / Books
Tasmania got gamed
James Boyce’s ‘Losing Streak’ investigates how one family came to rule the state’s poker-machine industry
Amanda Lohrey
The unedited life. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
The unedited life
The State Library of Victoria has acquired one of Australia’s finest collections of literary papers
Thornton McCamish
This storied land. Image of the Pilbara, Western Australia
Arts & Letters / Books
This storied land
Mark McKenna’s ‘From the Edge’ tells four fascinating stories of Aboriginal and settler interaction through the history of place
Frank Bongiorno

Science & Technology

The science question and feminism
STEM is the future, and women need to be part of it
Margaret Wertheim
The eureka factory. Image of Xiaojing Hao
The Monthly Essays
The eureka factory
Australia’s solar champions face an uncertain future
Ceridwen Dovey
Dinosaur digger. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
Dinosaur digger
Melbourne Museum’s Thomas Rich has devoted more than 30 years to Australia’s polar dinosaurs
Chloe Hooper
The start-up whisperer. Illustration
The start-up whisperer
Just how innovative is the Turnbull government’s innovation package?
Nick Feik


The school-shopping list
Private, public, state, selective … the trials of choosing a high school
Fran Cusworth
Child’s play. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
Child’s play
The Melbourne Museum’s new gallery takes small children seriously
Zoë Morrison
Rhodes dollars. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
Rhodes dollars
The Rhodes Scholarship is slowly embracing diversity
Zoë Morrison
New students. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
New students
Welcome to the Collingwood English Language School
Ingrid Laguna


Fallen angels. © Dave Tacon
The Monthly Essays
Fallen angels
The children left behind by Australian sex tourists in the Philippines
Margaret Simons
The Insult. Statue of a kouros in the National Archaeological Museum, Athens
The Monthly Essays
The Insult
An incurious encounter takes flight
Peter Robb
Spirit of independence. A TPN rebel at base camp in the jungle of West Papua
The Monthly Essays
Spirit of independence
A journey through West Papua
William Lloyd-George
The foundering miracle. Prime Minister Naoto Kan of Japan addresses the nation about the worsening situation at Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, 25 March 2011
The Monthly Essays
The foundering miracle
Reflections on Japan
Hugh White


A near-impossible sell. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
A near-impossible sell
Sprout farmer Bruce Adams has created one of Australia’s more unlikely oversized highway attractions
Patrick Witton
The Medicine
The next big thin
Dissecting dietary fads and habits
Karen Hitchcock
Masaaki’s sushi. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
Masaaki’s sushi
Join the queue for Tasmania’s most sought-after Japanese
Josephine Rowe
The dining boom. Wine distributors from China visit the Barossa Valley
The Monthly Essays
The dining boom
Australia’s food and wine industry is the next big thing in China
Hamish McDonald


The stopover
The prospect of 12 hours in Singapore airport gives rise to an existential crisis
Robert Skinner
The perfect cup of coffee
On an island in Nicaragua, a rocky incline stands between Steve Hely and the Holy Grail of caffeine
Steve Hely
‘White Sands’ by Geoff Dyer. Cover of White Sands
‘White Sands’ by Geoff Dyer
Text Publishing; $32.99
Stephanie Bishop
Too upsetting. Illustration
Too upsetting
The boat cruise commentary had everything – except indigenous Tasmania
Bruce Pascoe

Family & Relationships

Why she broke. Image of Akon Guode
The Monthly Essays
Why she broke
The woman, her children and the lake: Akon Guode’s tragic story
Helen Garner
Not-church on time. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
Not-church on time
The Weekly Service offers a different kind of communion
Sylvia Rowley
The hand of faith. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
The hand of faith
In 1980 a giant gold nugget changed the Hillier family’s fortunes
Lisa Clausen
Rough times. © Andrew Quilty / Fairfax Images
The Monthly Essays
Rough times
Homelessness has reached crisis levels in Melbourne and Sydney
Paul Connolly

Law & Order

Rape among the lamingtons. Image of Ian Shevill
The Monthly Essays
Rape among the lamingtons
Tragic evidence of child sexual abuse in the Newcastle Anglican Church
Anne Manne
Call for backup. Image of Malmsbury Youth Justice Centre
The Monthly Essays
Call for backup
How authorities lost control of juvenile detention
Russell Marks
Duterte’s dirty war. Prisoners in the holding cells at Tondo police station, Manila
The Monthly Essays
Duterte’s dirty war
A trip to the Philippines reveals the human cost of the war on drugs
Margaret Simons
The secrets of others. Cover of East West Street
Arts & Letters / Books
The secrets of others
Philippe Sands’ ‘East West Street’ mixes memoir, biography and thriller to explain the origins of ‘crimes against humanity’ and ‘genocide’
Martin Krygier

Indigenous Australia

A job half undone. Illustration
A job half undone
Constitutional recognition for Indigenous Australians must be more than just tokenism
Noel Pearson
An Aboriginal place
A farming family and Indigenous elders join forces to recognise a special site on private land
Sam Vincent
Seeing visions. Still from Collisions
Arts & Letters / Film
Seeing visions
Lynette Wallworth’s ‘Collisions’ brings virtual reality to the Western Desert
Quentin Sprague
Bust  in  the  Pilbara. Image of mining workers flying from Perth
The Monthly Essays
Bust  in  the  Pilbara
A region returns to earth
Hamish McDonald

National Security

Looking for moles. Image of surveillance of David Combe
Arts & Letters / Books
Looking for moles
The third volume in ASIO’s official history confirms infiltration by Soviet intelligence
David McKnight
China flexes. Illustration
China flexes
The dispute over the South China Sea will come to affect more than just China’s near neighbours
Michael Wesley
Spies like Oz. ASIO surveillance photograph of the 1968 May Day March in Wollongong
Arts & Letters / Books
Spies like Oz
John Blaxland’s ‘The Protest Years: The Official History of ASIO 1963–1975’
David McKnight
Oil and water. Robert Domm interviews Xanana Gusmão, October 1990
The Monthly Essays
Oil and water
Australia blurs the lines with Timor-Leste
Mark Aarons


A cleansing fire. Image of Jessa Crispin
Arts & Letters / Books
A cleansing fire
Jessa Crispin’s ‘Why I Am Not a Feminist’ demands a dismantling of mainstream feminism … and the system itself
Stephanie Bishop
Business as usual?. Image of men at board meeting
The Monthly Essays
Business as usual?
The confused case for corporate gender equality
Cordelia Fine
Climax isn’t the point. Image of Helen Tufts and Helena Born
Arts & Letters / Books
Climax isn’t the point
Emily Witt’s ‘Future Sex’ and Sheila Rowbotham’s ‘Rebel Crossings’ approach the concept of free love from different perspectives
Anwen Crawford
The gentlemen’s club. Illustration
The Medicine
The gentlemen’s club
Having a baby and having a medical career
Karen Hitchcock


Marathon man. Source
Marathon man
John Coates’ 27-year AOC tenure must end before real change can take place
Mungo MacCallum
The Nation Reviewed
Desirable elements
Simon Oxenham has designed some of the world’s greatest skateparks
Jenan Taylor
8972 fans. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
8972 fans
The Newtown Jets rugby league team has a loyal – and increasingly urbane – suburban following
Alex McKinnon
Foot soldiers. Illustration
The Nation Reviewed
Foot soldiers
Trackside at a 24-hour ultramarathon
Paul Connolly