Owning up to Australia’s slave labour past

Hersha Kadkol This year marks the 170th anniversary of the beginning of “blackbirding”, the kidnapping of people from Pacific islands and bringing them to the Australian colonies as indentured labour. In 1847, “pioneer” Benjamin Boyd, in an effort to maintain a failing pastoral and whaling business, kid...CONTINUE READING

Understanding the 1917 general strike

Robert Bollard On 14 August 1917, readers of the Sydney Morning Herald were treated to the following passage by Mr W.D. Carmalt, the manager of the refreshment rooms at Central Station. He was relating the scandalous behaviour of the young women whom he employed as waitresses: “For the past few days the...CONTINUE READING

150 years of Karl Marx’s Capital

Tom O’Lincoln For Karl Marx the author, there was something smile about. The first of three volumes, called Capital: A Critique of Political Economy , became a success in his lifetime and by the 1880s it was known across Europe as “the bible of the working class”. One reason, according to Frederick Enge...CONTINUE READING

Foucault’s History of Sexuality

Jordan Humphreys Why should socialists care about Foucault’s History of Sexuality? He is, after all, widely promoted as the bald-headed and turtle-necked prophet of postmodernism, long the pseudo-radical arch rival to Marxism in the halls of academia. In his writings, many a smug first year social theory s...CONTINUE READING

Why North Korea has every right to hate the US

Kaye Broadbent North Korea, for the first time, has successfully tested an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), a long-range rocket with nuclear capabilities. This is a major development in the country’s weapons program, which includes short-range missiles capable of hitting South Korea and Japan....CONTINUE READING

The nasty business of cricket

Justen Bellingham The struggle between administrators and players is a re-emerging theme in Australian cricket. Cricket boards typically seek to monopolise power, unilaterally issue directives and manage the game singlehandedly. Players have responded by demanding greater opportunity to participate in crick...CONTINUE READING

The problem with identity politics

Louise O’Shea The label “identity politics” is applied to a range of positions and practices, the key unifying features of which are sectional approaches to challenging oppression and the prioritisation of subjective experience. These can be highly theorised or simply reflect a common sense based on wha...CONTINUE READING

Bubble trouble: Australia’s free market housing failure

Ben Hillier To understand the scale of the current property boom, consider that the number of fixed cranes atop dedicated residential projects in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane is greater than the combined total of New York, Boston, Washington (DC), Chicago, Toronto, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco,...CONTINUE READING

The ALP, pioneer of neoliberalism

Tom Bramble Former treasurer Wayne Swan denies that the Hawke and Keating governments of 1983-96 and the Rudd and Gillard governments of 2007-13 were responsible for the introduction and maintenance of neoliberal policies in Australia. While accepting, indeed boasting of, Hawke and Keating’s “economic...CONTINUE READING