Showing all posts tagged: Australia

The Man Who Invented Vegemite, a book by Jamie Callister

21 June 2023

The Man Who Invented Vegemite, by Jamie Callister, book cover

Book cover of The Man Who Invented Vegemite, written by >Jamie Callister.

Strewth, it’s been one hundred years since Australia’s favourite yeast extract, Vegemite, hit the shelves of grocery shops. Although similar (sort of…) to Marmite, which came along in 1902, Vegemite was developed by Cyril Callister, a Melbourne chemist and food technologist in 1922.

In 2012, Jamie Callister, the grandson of Cyril wrote a book, The Man Who Invented Vegemite, to mark what would have been the ninetieth anniversary of Vegemite. And now, ten years later, it looks like the book has been republished to commemorate a century of the viscous, dark brown — and might I add — delicious, spread’s presence in the world.

RELATED CONTENT

, , , ,

The Last Daughter a film by Nathaniel Schmidt, Brenda Matthews

21 June 2023

For decades until the 1970’s, some Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children were forcibly removed from their families by successive Australian governments. These children became known as the Stolen Generations. Indigenous woman Brenda Matthews was taken from her family aged two, and placed in the care of a white family.

Matthews was later returned to her birth family after her biological mother regained custody of her. The The Last Daughter, trailer, a documentary which Matthews co-directs with Nathaniel Schmidt, recounts her story as she attempts to trace her adoptive, loving, white foster family, while learning more about her Indigenous family.

The Last Daughter is presently screening in selected Australian cinemas.

RELATED CONTENT

, , , ,

The Voice to Parliament Handbook, what an Indigenous voice means

21 June 2023

Australians will be participating in a referendum sometime in the next six months to decide whether a change should be made to the constitution, to create an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice. Such a Voice would take the form of an independent body made up of Indigenous Australians.

Delegates of this body, who would not be elected members of parliament, would be tasked with advising the Australian government and parliament on matters pertaining to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Their input however would not be binding.

Changes to the Australian constitution are never simple or straightforward. The process, and discussion, involved in making amendments, can be confusing and unsettling. To better understand the purpose of the Voice, and what it means, Hardie Grant have published a book called The Voice to Parliament Handbook.

Written by Thomas Mayo, a Torres Strait Islander, and Uluṟu Statement advocate, and journalist Kerry O’Brien, with illustrations by cartoonist Cathy Wilcox, the handbook aims to answer some of the more commonly asked questions about an Indigenous Voice to the Australian parliament:

A handy tool for people inclined to support a ‘yes’ vote in the referendum, The Voice to Parliament Handbook reflects on this historic opportunity for genuine reconciliation, to right the wrongs and heal the ruptured soul of a nation. This guide offers simple explanations, useful anecdotes, historic analogies and visual representations, so you can share it among friends, family and community networks in the build-up to the referendum.

RELATED CONTENT

, , ,

Australian Glenn Homann wins 2022 mobile photography award

14 April 2023

Brisbane based Australian photographer Glenn Homann has been named the 2022 Grand Prize winner in the twelfth annual Mobile Photography Awards, with a portrait titled “Old Mate”.

Glenn Homann’s mobile photography is remarkable on so many levels. He takes us with him through a broad sweep of genres with particular mastery of light & shape, character & narrative. From landscapes to architecture, portraits & street photography, Glenn repeatedly locates the visual ephemera at the intersection of geometry & color.

Before I actually read who the winner was, I speculated they might be Australian, after spotting the photo title, old mate.

RELATED CONTENT

, ,

Trove receives funding to continue ongoing operation

4 April 2023

Trove, Australia’s online library database of historical and cultural documents, which is operated by the National Library of Australia, has received a new round of funding from the Australian federal government. The move ends months of uncertainty that had been shrouding Trove’s future:

The National Library of Australia welcomes the commitment made by the Albanese Government to provide $33m over the next 4 years to maintain Trove, with $9.2m ongoing and indexed funding from July 2027. We are delighted that Trove’s future has been secured.

RELATED CONTENT

, , , ,

Sally Rooney on the hardships facing renters in Ireland

25 March 2023

Irish author Sally Rooney, writing for The Irish Times, about the end of an eviction moratorium that may render many people homeless:

The wave of evictions expected to begin from the end of this month is not merely theoretical: we already know that during the period of the ban, tenants in the State sought advice on roughly 1,500 new eviction notices. In a few weeks’ time, if the Government does not reverse course, these evictions will be eligible to proceed. Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien has even publicly accepted that homelessness will “very possibly” increase when the moratorium comes to an end.

While the situation is different, the outlook for residential renters in Australia is likewise challenging. In January 2023, vacancy rates nationwide were just 0.8 percent. In some centres — Perth and Adelaide — vacancy rates were 0.3 percent, which might as well mean there are next to no residential properties available to rent.

RELATED CONTENT

, ,

Birrarangga Film Festival a global Indigenous film event

22 March 2023

Birrarangga Film Festival poster, by Aretha Brown

Artwork by Aretha Brown.

The biennial Birrarangga Film Festival runs from Thursday 23 March, through to Tuesday 28 March 2023, in Melbourne:

BIRRARANGGA Film Festival celebrates Global Indigenous Films that explore the curatorial themes of ‘strength, resilience and the environment’. First Nations relationships to the image as a form of expression, particularly in Australia, is connected to thousands of years of cultural practices. This festival honours that history and acknowledges the contemporary currency of the moving image, of film, as an expression of the human experience in relation to our natural surroundings.

The festival opens with a screening of Bones of Crows, directed by Canadian screenwriter and filmmaker Marie Clements.

RELATED CONTENT

, , ,

Ukrainian writers withdraw from Adelaide Writers Week 2023

22 February 2023

Three Ukrainian authors, Kateryna Babkina, Olesya Khromeychuk, and Maria Tumarkin, who were scheduled to speak at Adelaide Writers Week in March 2023, are no longer participating in the event:

The event’s director, Louise Adler, confirmed Kateryna Babkina and Olesya Khromeychuk, who were scheduled to speak at a session on the impact of Russia’s invasion on Ukrainian civilians, had decided not to appear. She said the move was prompted by comments of another guest, Palestinian-American author Susan Abulhawa, who has described Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy as a “Nazi-promoting Zionist” and accused him of dragging “the whole world into the inferno of WWIII”.

On Tuesday, Australian law firm MinterEllison withdrew their support for the festival, in the wake of the same comments made by Susan Abulhawa, a Palestinian-American author.

RELATED CONTENT

, , ,

Truth Be Told, the 2023 Adelaide Writers Week program

11 February 2023

The program for Adelaide Writers’ Week 2023, which runs from Saturday 4 March though to Thursday 9 March 2023, in the capital of South Australia, has been published. This year’s theme is Truth Be Told, always a subjective, nuanced matter, as festival director Louise Adler notes:

The thread that weaves through the 2023 program of literary luminaries, writers on their way and novitiates is the notion of truth — truths we acknowledge, truths we feel are debatable and those beyond debate. Do we want truthfulness in fiction or does it only matter in nonfiction? Do novelists owe us the truth? Is the biographer’s task to tell nothing but the truth about their subject? Is my truth The Truth and yours simply your truth and therefore partial, imprecise or even suspect? Is any truth incontestable, universal? Does truth matter and if so, how should it be upheld in a world crammed with falsehoods, lies, misinformation and inaccuracies? If all ideas are reimagined or appropriated, if originality is a fallacious delusion nurtured in an artist’s garret, does truth even matter anymore?

Catriona Menzies-Pike, J.M. Coetzee, Sarah Holland-Batt, and Raina MacIntyre are among Australian writers who will be in attendance.

RELATED CONTENT

, , ,

A poet laureate will need to bolster interest in Australian poetry

4 February 2023

By 2025 Australia will have a poet laureate, who will presumably be selected and appointed by the proposed Writers Australia peak body. As with many aspects of the National Culture Policy which was unveiled last Monday though, details remain thin on the ground for now.

For instance, how long would an incumbent serve, and what exactly would their role be? Poetry, certainly in Australia, is a niche form of literature, given less than five percent of the population chooses to partake of written rhyme, so one of the mandates of an Australian poet laureate would be to bolster interest in local poetry.

This is something Sarah Holland-Batt, professor of creative writing and literary studies at Queensland University of Technology, advocated for when making submissions to the National Cultural Policy:

“An Australian poet laureate would elevate the status of Australian poetry domestically and internationally,” Holland-Batt says. “Australian literature can struggle on the world stage so there would be a soft diplomacy element to it.” She said the laureate would be an advocate for Australia and Australian writing and the benefits would be beyond only poetry. “It would be a big boost for Australian literature to have someone with that authority invested by the state.”

RELATED CONTENT

, , , ,