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Raising Julian Assange

09 December 2010 | Lyn Bender

Anwar IbrahimWho is this Assange? Is he a messianic hero, larrikin, renegade, terrorist, or just a very naughty boy? As a psychologist my interest lies in history, as this is frequently re-enacted in our lives. And Julian Assange had a very unusual childhood.

Julian Assange's problem for feminists

09 December 2010 | Ruby Hamad

FeminismJulian Assange claims to be fighting for freedom of speech and government transparency — ideals that feminists also hold dear. But Assange has been arrested on rape charges and many feminists will find it hard to reconcile their defence of him with their support of rape victims.

Wikileaks' problematic moral justification

28 October 2010 | Andrew Hamilton

Wikileaks logoIt has been argued that even if the leaks do endanger the lives of some allied soldiers, even more lives have been lost because governments have concealed the reality of the war. This utilitarian argument undermines Wikileaks' claim to be ethically superior to governments.

Polanski's art not greater than his crime

16 July 2010 | Binoy Kampmark
Roman PolanskiThe decision by a Swiss judge not to extradite film director Roman Polanski to the US has again triggered the debate about how artists are treated by the law. The case has been running simultaneously to that of Russian musician. The parallels are striking.

How Facebook changed my life

19 May 2010 | Cassandra Golds

You never read anything good about Facebook. A headline in the Sydney Morning Herald this week declared there are no rules. It has a reputation for superficiality and promiscuous over-sharing. But I haven't had so much fun in years. And I have never felt less alone.

Sympathy for Catherine Deveny

07 May 2010 | Andrew Hamilton
Catherine DevenyCatherine Deveny's sacking smells of hypocrisy. Some will say that those who live by the sword die by the sword. But in this case it appeared that those who provided her with the sword and encouraged her to use it liberally, stabbed her in the back with it.

The dignity of Carl Williams

21 April 2010 | Andrew Hamilton

Carl WilliamsWhen celebrities who have treated people violently suffer themselves from violence, their suffering is approved because it is an expected part of the plot. The death of Carl Williams has been covered as if it were an episode of Underbelly. Williams deserves better than this.

China turns tables on Australia's Indian racism

27 January 2010 | Peter Hodge
When western campaigners used the Beijing Olympics to promote the Tibet issue, the Chinese felt the attention was sensationalist and unfair. So it's no surprise the Chinese media took notice when  violence against foreign students in Australia came to prominence.

Catholic dogs and the new sectarianism

08 October 2009 | Tim Kroenert
Marrying Out recalls the vicious sectarian divide between Catholics and Protestants in Australia during much of the 20th century. Blame is allocated to neither Protestants nor Catholics, but to the human propensity for distrust and hatred.

ABC's mainstream religion tested, found wanting

01 October 2009 | Paul Collins
Religion Report Since the axing of The Religion Report, mainstream ABC news and current affairs programs have missed a range of important religious topics and events. It seems unlikely that General Manager Mark Scott will be able to maintain religion as a viable reality on the ABC.

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