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Who killed Whitney Houston?

1 Comment
13 June 2017 | Tim Kroenert

Running parallel to this is Houston's intimate, long-time friendship with Robyn Crawford. Broomfield stops short of characterising it as romantic; others do not, and space is given to rumination about the difficulties of being a black, gay woman. In any case, the friendship sparks tension with Brown, and disapproval from Cissy. Crawford's abrupt departure from the tour is another turning point. In Broomfield's thesis, Houston's drug habit is a reaction to these various threats to her authenticity.

Nearly knowing John Clarke

12 June 2017 | Brian Matthews

John Clarke and Brian DaweOne of the 30 comedians, satirists, cartoonists and writers they interviewed was John Clarke. 'I first met John Clarke five years ago,' Murray recalls in his 1992 introduction to the interview, 'even though we grew up in the same town in New Zealand and for a while went to the same school. My claim to fame is that I nearly knew John Clarke. Recently when we looked though his school photos we realised that we knew every kid in Palmerston North in 1960 except each other.'

Three aspects of Australian racism

1 Comment
11 June 2017 | P. S. Cottier

Prisoner in hood at Don DaleIt involves hoods, but less KKK than DDD - Don Dale Detention where the kids wear the hoods in a stunning display of regressive taxation. 2. Outsourcing pain to poorer places which we pay to exercise contempt on our behalf - washing red hands in the convenient sea. Who needs a wall? 3. Protecting Islamic women by shouting at them on streets for wearing religious freedom.

Raising feminist men in 1970s America

06 June 2017 | Tim Kroenert

Abbie introduces Jamie to the paired liberating movements of punk rock and second-wave feminism. Both lead to illuminating experiences, from his first rock concert, use of alcohol, and kiss, to being beaten for casting aspersions on a peer's grasp of female sexual anatomy. His relationship with Julie on the other hand provides a difficult counterpoint. His peevish concern over her promiscuity is largely possessive; his theoretical understanding of women's agency falling down in the face of adolescent hormones.

Another stranger on a tram

04 June 2017 | Peta Yowie

Woman watches tramIt's a no eye contact sport, when I see a girl I like. She's putting lip balm on her lips, as the morning scenery slips by like a young child getting out of his pyjamas. I stare at everyone but her, because her face is like a burning sun ... It's only as I go to get off she looks up and smiles. I smile back, I've done a few miles with these smiles. I'd like to peel the pastry off and eat the sweet thing underneath. I catch my breath like a butterfly in a net. She's another stranger I'll never know the destination of.

At an angle to the universe: Remembering Brian Doyle

29 May 2017 | Gillian Bouras

Brian DoyleBrian's work was notable for its firm yet subtle control, the great tumbling yet disciplined lists of adjectives, the elevation of the quotidian, the appreciation of the natural world and its creatures, the sheer love of life. Re-reading one recent piece I find the references to the 'lovely bride' and 'the house wolf' almost unbearably touching. One reader wrote he was not initiated into Brian's 'grand mysteries', but that the joy and awe conveyed rang out with love and goodwill. How very true.

The Storycatcher - 17 of the best of Brian Doyle

29 May 2017 | Brian Doyle

Brian DoyleBrian Doyle was the editor of Portland Magazine at the University of Portland, the author most recently of the essay collection Grace Notes, and a long time contributor to Eureka Street. Brian died early Saturday morning 27 May 2017 following complications related to a cancerous brain tumour, at the age of 60. Here we present a collection of some of Brian's best pieces from the past 12 years.

Finding my grandfather

28 May 2017 | Wally Swist

DNA strandThere is the photograph of my father's father in military uniform, an Austrian, serving in the Polish cavalry in WWI, standing ramrod straight. It is he whom I think of when I find myself dowsing my genome for answers regarding my origin, the deep pull that draws me to the late symphonies of Mozart, Rilke's angelic mysticism, and, as a child, to Krapfen and Apfelstrudel ... That grandfather died shortly after returning to his farm from the results of having been a victim of a mustard gas attack in the war.

Pay fierce attention to the holy of everything

28 May 2017 | Brian Doyle

Baby examining leaves and grassWe talk about how there are all sorts of illuminated beings in every sort of context, and how some beings serve their fellows by being great listeners, and others have healing hands, and others are good at getting everyone to come to a disgruntled agreement, and how some are lucky to discover that their skill, their gift, the thing they love to do and do really well, is to pay fierce attention to the holy of everything, to notice the flourish and song of holy and the awful of bruised and broken holy, and report on this to their brothers and sisters, which is, of course, everyone.

Strong women heroes of grim abduction parables

1 Comment
23 May 2017 | Tim Kroenert

If two current Australian films are anything to go by, then one social issue weighing on local filmmakers in 2017 is the danger to women of emotionally and physically violent men. Neither film is a mere portrait of victimhood. The heroes of Cate Shortland's recent Berlin Syndrome and Ben Young's upcoming Hounds of Love - in the former, an Australian traveller in Europe, in the latter, a teenage school girl in suburban Perth - are ordinary women with both the will and capacity to fight back against their assailants.

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