Culture

Aboriginal reconciliation and what we can learn from a French philosopher

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What can a French historian and philosopher tell us about reconciliation between black and white in Australia? More than a century ago, when in Australia it was still widely presumed that Aboriginal people were a dying race, Ernest Renan was grappling with the question, what is a nation? By Matter of Fact host Stan Grant ABC It remains one of the most profound and powerful statements of identity, written in 1882 in the shadows of the French Revolution. Renan sought to ... Read More »

Largest swordfish ever caught in Australia may miss out on record due to fishing association requirements

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The largest swordfish ever caught in Australia — and the second-largest in the world — may miss out on the official record because it did not meet strict rules in the way it was caught. ABC Illawarra Nick McLaren The monster fish was caught off Mallacoota near the NSW Victorian border on Sunday afternoon by a crew from the Ulladulla Game Fishing Club. It weighed in at 436.2 kilograms, well above what is thought to be the current Australian record ... Read More »

How your religion changes your views on the right to die

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Rank-and-file Christians are at odds with religious leaders on euthanasia, with some denominations more supportive of voluntary assisted dying than others. Katie Burgess The Canberra Times As an ACT parliamentary inquiry into the end-of-life choices available to Canberrans continues, a survey of 1004 people has revealed how nearly half (48 per cent) of people with religious beliefs supported assisted dying laws. This is despite a hardline stance from some religious orders against legalising the practice. One of the report’s authors, Anthony ... Read More »

Universities need to do more to support refugee students

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In the past two decades Australian universities and schools have received growing numbers of students from refugee backgrounds. This is in line with increasing numbers of people accepted through… Authors: The Conversation But there are concerns refugee students are denied access to equitable educational opportunities as a result of: the challenges of settlement competing demands on their time due to family responsibilities (both in Australia and back home) financial concerns and getting trapped in low-skilled jobs. In addition, transition is ... Read More »

Infant mortality rates higher in areas with more Christian fundamentalists, study finds

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The odds of an infant dying before their first birthday are higher in counties with greater proportions of conservative Protestants, especially fundamentalists, than in counties with more mainline Protestants and… Portland State University EurekAlert! The study, published online in May in the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, supports the idea that the more insular, anti-institutional culture of fundamentalists can lead to poorer health outcomes. Ginny Garcia-Alexander, a sociology professor in PSU’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and ... Read More »

Martin Luther King’s son says Australia should be ’embarrassed’ by Indigenous treatment

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The son of legendary civil rights leader Martin Luther King Junior has said Australia should be embarrassed of the way it treats Indigenous Australians. Steven Schubert ABC Speaking on a visit to Alice Springs, Martin Luther King III said Australia’s Indigenous people were worse off than when he first visited the country two decades ago. “For some reason, there’s been this desire to re-oppress people who are already oppressed,” he said. “Here I am 20 years later, and I don’t ... Read More »

Macron Defends Magazine That Labeled Erdogan a ‘Dictator’

James Boxell, editor for Bloomberg Gadfly, poses for a photograph in London, U.K. on Tuesday, April 24, 2018.

Bloomberg, London, U.K. Tuesday, April 24, 2018. Photographer: Simon Dawson 

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French President Emmanuel Macron waded into a debate over a magazine cover that labeled Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as a “dictator,” saying attacks on kiosks selling the latest issue were unacceptable. Helene Fouquet Bloomberg “Freedom of the press has no price: without it, it’s dictatorship,” Macron said on Twitter late on Monday. “It is totally unacceptable that Le Point posters are being ripped off kiosks on the grounds they displease the enemies of freedom of the press, in France ... Read More »

Duterte: Don’t refer to my kin as ‘First Family’

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MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte wants to do away with another Malacañang tradition as he asked the public not to use “First Family” when referring to his family, saying the practice is passé and is not appropriate in a democracy. phil.star Duterte expressed his dislike for the term while he was warning officials not to talk to any of his relatives about government projects. “I told them not to talk (to my family). I really do not want it. ... Read More »

Jewish Americans changed their names, but not at Ellis Island

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A well-worn joke in American Jewish culture goes like this. A Jewish immigrant landed at Ellis Island in New York. Kirsten Fermaglich The Conversation The procedures were confusing, and he was overwhelmed by the commotion. When one of the officials asked him “What is your name?” he replied, “Shayn fergessen,” which in Yiddish means “I’ve already forgotten.” The official then recorded his name as Sean Ferguson. Today, members of many white ethnic groups – including Jews, Italians and Poles – ... Read More »

I teach refugees to map their world

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I first visited the Zaatari refugee camp in early 2015. Located in northern Jordan, the camp is home to more than 80,000 Syrian refugees. Brian Tomaszewski The Conversation I was there as part of a research study on refugee camp wireless and information infrastructure. It’s one thing to read about refugees in the news. It’s a whole different thing to actually go visit a camp. I saw people living in metal caravans, mixed with tents and other materials to create ... Read More »

Hostility towards minorities can be contagious

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If people act hostile towards other ethnic groups, they easily find imitators Max-Planck-Gesellschaft EurekAlert! Inter-ethnic conflicts often escalate surprisingly quickly. In a recent study, researchers have investigated the influence of the environment on peoples’ hostility against minorities with the help of experiments. They found that hostility towards members of other ethnic groups is much more often imitated than hostility towards co-ethnics. Whether in Bosnia, Liberia, or Rwanda, violent conflicts have suddenly broken out between… So far, there… Hostility towards minorities… Read More »

University of Melbourne staff to strike over academic freedom

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University of Melbourne staff have voted to go on strike to protest what they say is an attack on free speech. Henrietta Cook The Age Hundreds of academics and professional staff will walk off campus next Wednesday to oppose a proposed new workplace agreement put forward by the university. The four-hour strike follows the university ditching a definition of academic and intellectual freedom in its proposed new workplace agreement. The National Tertiary and Education Union says the changes will mean ... Read More »

Iran urges Muslims to unite against US

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Iran’s supreme leader called on Muslim nations to unite against the United States, saying Tehran would never yield to “bullying,” state television reported yesterday. Hurriyet “The Iranian nation has successfully resisted bullying attempts by America and other arrogant powers and we will continue to resist… All Muslim nations should stand united against America and other enemies,” Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said. Iran’s top authority criticized Trump for saying on April 24 some countries in the Middle East “wouldn’t last a week” ... Read More »

Ancient Amazonians lived sustainably – and this matters for conservation today

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Our colleague, the archaeologist Santiago Rivas, recently made a remarkable discovery. Authors (4) The Conversation On a small plateau above the outskirts of Iquitos, a town in the northern Peruvian Amazon, he found a layer in the soil which contained small pieces of ceramic pottery, that were around 1,800-years-old. Digging deeper, he found another layer of soil, this time containing pottery that was about 2,500 years old. This is the archaeological site at Quistococha which has been occupied for at ... Read More »

Jacinda Ardern wears Māori cloak to Buckingham Palace

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New Zealand leader in Kahu huruhuru praised as proud moment for female leaders and Māori worldwide Eleanor Ainge Roy in Dunedin The Guardian New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern has caused a stir with a striking image of her walking the halls of Buckingham Palace swathed in a traditional Māori cloak during this week’s Commonwealth heads of government meeting. The prime minister wore a Kahu huruhuru; a Māori cloak adorned with feathers and bestowed on chiefs and dignitaries to convey prestige, respect and ... Read More »

Somaliland poet jailed for Somalia reunification poetry

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A court in the self-declared republic of Somaliland has sentenced a young poet to three years in jail. BBC Nacima Qorane was found guilty of bringing the state into contempt by advocating for Somaliland to reunite with Somalia. Pressure groups in Somaliland said Ms Qorane’s basic human rights have been violated. Somaliland self-declared independence in 1991, but is not recognised internationally. Ms Qorane was arrested in January after returning from the Somali capital Mogadishu, where prosecutors said she had recited ... Read More »