Quarterly Essay

Quarterly Essay 71: Follow the Leader - Democracy and the Rise of the Strongman

Quarterly Essay 71: Follow the Leader - Democracy and the Rise of the Strongman

Laura Tingle

What has gone wrong with political leadership in Australia? And are things likely to change with a change of leader or government?In this crisp and timely essay, Laura Tingle examines political leadership in general -...

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Quarterly Essay 70: Dead Right: How Neoliberalism Ate Itself and What Comes Next

Quarterly Essay 70: Dead Right: How Neoliberalism Ate Itself and What Comes Next

Richard Denniss

How did the big banks get away with so much for so long? Why are so many aged-care residents malnourished? And when did arms manufacturers start sponsoring the Australian War Memorial?In this passionate essay, Richard...

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Quarterly Essay 69: Moment of Truth: History and Australia's Future

Quarterly Essay 69: Moment of Truth: History and Australia’s Future

Mark McKenna

Australia is on the brink of momentous change, but only if its citizens and politicians can come to new terms with the past. Indigenous recognition and a new push for a republic await action.

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Quarterly Essay 68: Without America - Australia in the New Asia

Quarterly Essay 68: Without America - Australia in the New Asia

Hugh White

America is fading, and China will soon be the dominant power in our region. What does this mean for Australia's future?

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Quarterly Essay 67: Moral Panic 101 - Equality, Acceptance and the Safe Schools Scandal

Quarterly Essay 67: Moral Panic 101 - Equality, Acceptance and the Safe Schools Scandal

Benjamin Law

Are Australian schools safe? And if they're not, what happens when kids are caught in a bleak collision between ill-equipped school staff and a confected media scandal?

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Quarterly Essay 66: The Long Goodbye: Coal, Coral and Australia's Climate Deadlock

Quarterly Essay 66: The Long Goodbye: Coal, Coral and Australia’s Climate Deadlock

Anna Krien

The Great Barrier Reef is dying. Extreme weather is becoming all too familiar. And the Coalition government is divided and paralysed.

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Quarterly Essay 65: The White Queen - One Nation and the Politics of Race

Quarterly Essay 65: The White Queen - One Nation and the Politics of Race

David Marr

Most Australians despise what Pauline Hanson stands for, yet politics in this country is now orbiting around One Nation.

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Quarterly Essay 64: The Australian Dream - Blood, History and Becoming

Quarterly Essay 64: The Australian Dream - Blood, History and Becoming

Stan Grant

In a landmark essay, Stan Grant writes Indigenous people back into the economic and multicultural history of Australia. This is the fascinating story of how fringe dwellers fought not just to survive, but to prosper. Their legacy...

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Quarterly Essay 63: Enemy Within - American Politics in the Time of Trump

Quarterly Essay 63: Enemy Within - American Politics in the Time of Trump

Don Watson

In Enemy Within, Don Watson takes a memorable journey into the heart of the United States in the year 2016 - and the strangest election campaign that country has seen.

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Quarterly Essay 62: Firing Line - Australia's Path to War

Quarterly Essay 62: Firing Line - Australia’s Path to War

James Brown

Going to war may be the gravest decision a nation and its leaders make. At the moment, Australia is at war with ISIS. We also live in a region that has become much more volatile, as China asserts itself and America seeks to hold...

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Quarterly Essay 61: Balancing Act - Australia Between Recession and Renewal

Quarterly Essay 61: Balancing Act - Australia Between Recession and Renewal

George Megalogenis

Australia is in transition. Saying it is easy. The panic kicks in when we are compelled to describe what the future might look like. There is no complacent middle to aim at...

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Quarterly Essay 60: Political Amnesia - How We Forgot How To Govern

Quarterly Essay 60: Political Amnesia - How We Forgot How To Govern

Laura Tingle

In this crisp, profound and witty essay, Laura Tingle seeks answers to these questions. She ranges from ancient Rome to the demoralised state of the once-great Australian public service, from the jingoism of the past to the...

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Quarterly Essay Issue 59: Faction Man - Bill Shorten's Path to Power

Quarterly Essay Issue 59: Faction Man - Bill Shorten’s Path to Power

David Marr

The top job is within Bill Shorten's grasp. But who is he? How did he rise to become Labor leader? And does he have what it takes to beat Malcolm Turnbull and lead the country?

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Quarterly Essay 58: Blood Year - Terror and the Islamic State

Quarterly Essay 58: Blood Year - Terror and the Islamic State

David Kilcullen

Last year was a 'blood year' in the Middle East - massacres and beheadings, fallen cities, collapsed and collapsing states, the unravelling of a decade of Western strategy. We saw the rise of ISIS, the splintering of government in...

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Quarterly Essay 57: Dear Life - On Caring for the Elderly

Quarterly Essay 57: Dear Life - On Caring for the Elderly

Karen Hitchcock

In this moving and controversial Quarterly Essay, doctor and writer Karen Hitchcock investigates the treatment of the elderly and dying through some unforgettable cases. With honesty and deep experience, she looks at end-of-life...

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Clivosaurus: The Politics of Clive Palmer: Quarterly Essay 56

Clivosaurus: The Politics of Clive Palmer: Quarterly Essay 56

Guy Rundle

In Clivosaurus, Guy Rundle observes Palmer close up, examining his rise to prominence, his beliefs, his deals and his politics - not to mention his poetry. Rundle shows that neither the government nor the media have been able to...

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A Rightful Place: Race, Recognition and a More Complete Commonwealth

A Rightful Place: Race, Recognition and a More Complete Commonwealth

Noel Pearson

Over the next two years, Australians will decide if and how Aboriginal people will be recognised in the Constitution. Professor Greg Craven writes: 'We have a committed Prime Minister, and a committed opposition. We have a...

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 Read reviewQuarterly Essay 50 Unfinished Business: Sex, Freedom and Misogyny

Quarterly Essay 50 Unfinished Business: Sex, Freedom and Misogyny

Anna Goldsworthy

In the fiftieth Quarterly Essay, Anna Goldsworthy examines life for women after the gains made by feminism. From Facebook to 50 Shades of Grey, from Girls to gonzo porn, what are young women being told...

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Us & Them: On The Importance Of Animals: Quarterly Essay 45

Us & Them: On The Importance Of Animals: Quarterly Essay 45

Anna Krien

In this dazzling piece of reportage, Anna Krien investigates the contemporary animal kingdom and our place in it. From pets to food, from wildness to science experiments, Krien also reveals how animals are faring in this new world...

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Man-Made World: Choosing Between Progress And Planet: Quarterly Essay 44

Man-Made World: Choosing Between Progress And Planet: Quarterly Essay 44

Andrew Charlton

Across the globe, economists and environmentalists vie over who has the right response to climate change, population or food security issues. In this groundbreaking essay Charlton argues that our descendants will only thank us if...

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 Read reviewPower Trip: The Political Journey Of Kevin Rudd: Quarterly Essay 38

Power Trip: The Political Journey Of Kevin Rudd: Quarterly Essay 38

David Marr

This irreverent, controversial account is a ground-breaking, in-depth profile that traces Rudd's years in Queensland, in China, in opposition and finally in government. Based on extensive research, observation and interviewing, it...

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What's Right? The Future of Conservatism in Australia: Quarterly Essay 37

What’s Right? The Future of Conservatism in Australia: Quarterly Essay 37

Waleed Aly

What did George W. Bush and John Howard do to conservatism? In their wake, the conservative parties in the US and Australia seem to have lost their way. How did the Right in Australia end up in this place? How might it renew...

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Australian Story: Kevin Rudd And The Lucky Country: Quarterly Essay 36

Australian Story: Kevin Rudd And The Lucky Country: Quarterly Essay 36

Mungo MacCallum

Mungo MacCallum investigates political leadership in Australia, past and present. This is a barbed and perceptive look at the challenges facing the Rudd government and Australia. MacCallum argues that the things we used to rely on...

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Stop At Nothing: The Life And Adventures Of Malcolm Turnbull: QuarterlyEssay 34

Stop At Nothing: The Life And Adventures Of Malcolm Turnbull: QuarterlyEssay 34

Annabel Crabb

Malcolm Turnbull has quite a job ahead of him as leader of the Liberal Party. How is he going so far? What can we expect in the years ahead? This is a scintillating look at Turnbull and the Liberals in opposition. It is based on...

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Now or Never: A Sustainable Future for Australia?: QuarterlyEssay 31

Now or Never: A Sustainable Future for Australia?: QuarterlyEssay 31

Tim Flannery

Professor Tim Flannery investigates the latest climate science and the challenges facing Australia and the world. He looks at what the Rudd government needs to do if the nation is to play its part in averting a global...

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 Read reviewLast Drinks: The Impact of the Northern Territory Intervention: Quarterly Essay 30

Last Drinks: The Impact of the Northern Territory Intervention: Quarterly Essay 30

Paul Toohey

In this riveting piece of reportage and analysis, Toohey examines the wholesale attempt to change an entrenched way of life. He takes a perceptive, at time humorous, look at the encounter between outsiders, doctors, police,...

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Love And Money: The Family And The Free Market: Quarterly Essay 29

Love And Money: The Family And The Free Market: Quarterly Essay 29

Anne Manne

The author looks at the challenge of balancing love and economics, and the value our society places on both. Examining how paid work has become 'sacred' for many, she argues that any true definition of equality has to take into...

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Exit Right: The Unravelling of John Howard: Quarterly Essay28

Exit Right: The Unravelling of John Howard: Quarterly Essay28

Judith Brett

In Exit Right , Judith Brett explains why the tide turned on John Howard. This is an essay about leadership, in particular Howard's style of strong leadership which led him to dominate his party with such ultimately catastrophic...

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Reaction Time: Climate Change And The Nuclear Option: Quarterly Essay 27

Reaction Time: Climate Change And The Nuclear Option: Quarterly Essay 27

Ian Lowe

Australia is at a crossroads: do we need to embrace a nuclear future? In Reaction Time, Ian Lowe examines the science and the politics of nuclear power, as well as the feasible alternatives in an era of global warming.

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The History Question: Who Owns The Past?: Quarterly Essay 23

The History Question: Who Owns The Past?: Quarterly Essay 23

Inga Clendinnen

Looks past the skirmishes and pitched battles of the history wars, and asks what's at stake, what kind of history do we want and need? The author discusses what good history looks like and, more specifically, what good Australian...

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Voting for Jesus: Christianity and Politics in Australia: Quarterly Essay 22

Voting for Jesus: Christianity and Politics in Australia: Quarterly Essay 22

Amanda Lohrey

Explores the world of evangelical Christianity. It also looks at the use and abuse of religion in party politics. Analysing the success of Family First, Lohrey argues that Christians have far less influence than they would like,...

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What's Left?: The Death Of Social Democracy: Quarterly Essay21

What’s Left?: The Death Of Social Democracy: Quarterly Essay21

Clive Hamilton

According to the author, we need a completely new politics built on the world as we find it. In his provocative new essay, he throws out a challenge to the party of social democracy, the Labour Party - to both its true believers...

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A Time For War: The Rebirth Of Australia's Military Culture: Quarterly Essay 20

A Time For War: The Rebirth Of Australia’s Military Culture: Quarterly Essay 20

John Birmingham

Bestselling author John Birmingham delves into our new military myths. Why has Anzac Day returned and Vietnam faded? Why do we love war stories again? What does this mean for the troops on the ground?

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Relaxed & Comfortable: The Liberal Party's Australia: Quarterly Essay 19

Relaxed & Comfortable: The Liberal Party’s Australia: Quarterly Essay 19

Judith Brett

Australians are relaxed and comfortable with the Liberal Party. What is the party doing right? What is its core appeal to Australian voters? Has John Howard made a dramatic break with the past, or is he simply our robert Menzies?

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The Worried Well: The Depression Epidemic and Medicalisation ofOur Sorrows:Quarterly Essay 18

The Worried Well: The Depression Epidemic and Medicalisation ofOur Sorrows:Quarterly Essay 18

Gail Bell

An essay about the widely acknowledged over prescription of drugs in Australia. Always conscious of the real suffering behind the frenzied consumption, it nevertheless questions the new culture of diagnosing, pathologising and...

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Mission Impossible: The Sheikhs, The US and The Future of Iraq: Quarterly Essay 14

Mission Impossible: The Sheikhs, The US and The Future of Iraq: Quarterly Essay 14

Paul McGeough

In this second Quarterly Essay of 2004 Paul McGeough offers a dramatic account of why Iraq remains in chaos despite desperate American efforts to create a model democracy in the Middle East.

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Sending Them Home: Refugees and the New Politics of Indifference: Quarterly Essay 13

Sending Them Home: Refugees and the New Politics of Indifference: Quarterly Essay 13

R. Manne

This is a groundbreaking and dramatic account of a transformation with global consequences. As other Western nations come to adopt similarly harsh measures, this account will serve as a prophetic evocation and analysis of the...

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Made In England: Australia's British Inheritance: QuarterlyEssay 12

Made In England: Australia’s British Inheritance: QuarterlyEssay 12

David Malouf

Australia's British inheritance is a paradox that has preoccupied much of Malouf's fiction, and now it gives rise to a brilliant essay exploring Australia's connection with our one-time 'mother-country'. Malouf ponders the...

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Bad Company: The Cult Of The Ceo: Quarterly Essay 10

Bad Company: The Cult Of The Ceo: Quarterly Essay 10

Gideon Haigh

In the second Quarterly Essay of 2003, Gideon Haigh scrutinises the way we have turned CEOs into tin gods. Is moral outrage the appropriate response to the collapses of Enron or HIH or are we all implicated in a ...

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Beautiful Lies: Population & Environment In Australia: Quarterly Essay 9

Beautiful Lies: Population & Environment In Australia: Quarterly Essay 9

Tim Flannery

Flannery ignites the population debate and asks how many people Australia can really support. He argues that there is no conflict between maintaining the highest standard of human rights and achieving an environmentally...

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Paradise Betrayed: West Papua's Struggle For Independence: Quarterly Essay 7

Paradise Betrayed: West Papua’s Struggle For Independence: Quarterly Essay 7

John Martinkus

West Papua is today the site of a covert and brutal struggle. Investigative reporter John Martinkus has just returned from the region, where he has spoken to guerillas and Indonesian officers, politicians and ordinary people. His...

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Beyond Belief: What Future For Labor?: Quarterly Essay 6

Beyond Belief: What Future For Labor?: Quarterly Essay 6

John Button

The latest in this successful series of current political essays. John Button reveals the workings of the Labor Party today, its successes and failures and where it is heading. Winner of Victorian Premier's Literary Award 2003.

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Rabbit Syndrome: Australia & America: Quarterly Essay 4

Rabbit Syndrome: Australia & America: Quarterly Essay 4

Don Watson

In a dark, brooding, moody essay, Don Watson plays on the paradoxes of Australia's feeling about America and offers a scathing view of an Australian culture that is asking to be engulfed by its great and powerful friend because...

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Appeasing Jakarta: Australia's Complicity In The East: Quarterly Essay 2

Appeasing Jakarta: Australia’s Complicity In The East: Quarterly Essay 2

John Birmingham

John Birmingham critically examines the Australia-Indonesia relationship. This essay is a controversial account of how the Australian Government's relation to Indonesia is characterised by delusion and misjudgment.

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In Denial: The Stolen Generations and the Right: Quarterly Essay 1

In Denial: The Stolen Generations and the Right: Quarterly Essay 1

Robert Manne

Attacks the right-wing campaign against the 'Bringing Them Home' report which revealed how thousands of Aborigines had been taken from their parents.

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Quarterly Essay 3: The Opportunist - John Howard and the Triumph of Reaction

Quarterly Essay 3: The Opportunist - John Howard and the Triumph of Reaction

Guy Rundle

What have the Howard years meant for Australia? In this third election issue of Quarterly Essay, Guy Rundle answers this question and looks ahead to the type of government that will be right for Australia.

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