Anti-Irish racism in Australian history

Mick Armstrong Anti-Irish racism was brought to Australia on the First Fleet and remained a core element of Australian politics for almost 200 years. It was undoubtedly the main racial/communal division in the working class for much of this period. The divisions were so entrenched that they persisted for...CONTINUE READING

I was a teenage socialist

Diane Fieldes Every time I hear Midnight Oil’s chorus – “Oh, the power and the passion. Oh, the temper of the time” – I am transported to the past. Not to 1982, when the song was released, but to the heady days of the early 1970s, when I first encountered socialist politics. An idea that something momen...CONTINUE READING

Henry Lawson and the ‘Australian Legend’

Sandra Bloodworth Romanticisation of the outback and the bush has been an enduring theme in the construction of Australian nationalism. Self-reliance in the face of an inhospitable natural environment allegedly epitomises, or at least captures something central to, “the Aussie spirit”. Think of the endless...CONTINUE READING

‘Post-truth politics’ isn’t peak populism, it’s peak liberal capitalism

Ben Hillier Political lying has taken on a qualitatively new dimension. It’s the “post-truth politics” period, apparently. Oxford Dictionaries, which crowned “post-truth” the 2016 word of the year, notes that “it describes not just particular assertions, but a general characteristic of our age”. Donal...CONTINUE READING

Wapping – the bitterest of disputes

Liz Ross The 1980s were brutal years for workers and their unions as the neoliberal wave crossed the world. With it came austerity and an employers’ offensive. Strong unions were among the first targeted. In Australia, it was the Builders Labourers and the Pilots and in the US, the Air Traffic Cont...CONTINUE READING

How Australian workers beat conscription in WWI

Mick Armstrong The twenty-eighth of October is the centenary of one of the greatest triumphs of the Australian working class movement: the defeat of the World War One conscription referendum. This was an incredibly bitter and hard-fought battle against the combined weight of every section of the rich and...CONTINUE READING

How oppression can be ended

Louise O’Shea The struggle against oppression has been the driving force of history and social development. Far from submitting meekly to their lot, human beings have resisted inequality and oppression from the earliest days of class society. But resistance alone is no guarantee of success. Oppression,...CONTINUE READING

Why capitalism causes oppression

Louise O’Shea Attempting to explain and understand the many forms of oppression that exist in society without reference to the nature of the capitalist system is a sure path to answers that don’t answer and explanations that don’t explain. Individual prejudice, lack of education or ill-advised public po...CONTINUE READING

A lattice of self-love: elite private schools and the making of the ruling class

Jane Kenway Elite private schools have always been involved in the making of class. They do “class work” on behalf of their usually wealthy, well-connected clients, patrons and advocates by reproducing their privilege, power and status over the generations. Such schools are immersed in extensive netwo...CONTINUE READING