Articles on Friday essay

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The 1978 Mardi Gras started as a peaceful march and degenerated into a violent clash with police. The Pride History Group

Friday essay: on the Sydney Mardi Gras march of 1978

Is a formal apology to the 1978 Mardi Gras marchers warranted? Some understanding of the oppressive social conditions affecting the lives of sexual minorities in Australia in that era is required.
New York Fashion Week has grown from its humble second world war roots into a cultural juggernaut. Carlo Allegri/Reuters

Friday essay: how New York Fashion Week came to be

New York Fashion week starts today and the world will watch outrageous designs strut down the runway. How did New York become one of the great fashion centres of the modern world?
Kanye functions as a mirror for the most visible and occasionally garish values of his time. Charles Platiau/ Reuters

Friday essay: the sounds of Kanye West

Many have long forgotten the simple fact that Kanye West is one of the greatest producers of hip-hop in its history. A decade-long six-album streak of critically acclaimed albums rivals the greatest icons of pop.
At the time of publication, Emma’s longevity was far from guaranteed. The Shopping Sherpa

Friday essay: Jane Austen’s Emma at 200

At the time of publication, the longevity of Jane Austen's fifth novel Emma was far from guaranteed. And yet, 200 years later, it now seems immortal. This is the story of its remarkable life.
Memoirists who write about divorce, addiction or suicide can start important conversations – and leave families feeling exposed or humiliated. Where do you draw the line? fosa./Flickr

Friday essay: Can you keep a secret? Family memoirs break taboos – and trust

True stories that enrich our public sphere are often drawn from the intimate and shared lives of their authors. Where is the line between rattling social proprieties and respecting others’ privacy?
What effect might AI have on an activity like art-making? Timely Alex

Friday essay: Rise of the artistic machines

The field of computational creativity examines the mechanisms by which technology can perform creative tasks, particularly in the arts. How can software create works of beauty, value and meaning?
The virgin birth at the heart of Christianity has many corresponding versions in other ancient traditions. Detail from a panel by Conrad von Soest, 1403. Wikimedia Commons

Friday essay: virgin mothers and miracle babies

Biblical scholars and theologians have long discussed, debated and disputed the virgin birth of Jesus, with some arguing that there is no imperative to link it to the doctrine of the Incarnation.
The cultural context in which class, ethnic and racial tensions explode into open violence must be analysed honestly. AAP Image/Paul Miller

Friday essay: a response to the Cronulla riots, ten years on

Australia's key foundation stories have a narrative arc based on the slow simmering of social tension and anxiety culminating in an explosive release of group hostility. Was Cronulla any different?
The marketing of Australian art largely remains a provincial exercise within a global art environment. Image: Sydney Contemporary Art Fair, 2015. AAP Image/NEWZULU/THINKING MEDIA

Friday essay: the art market is failing Australian artists

Despite rhetoric positioning Australia as a clever and creative country, its artists, particularly in the visual arts, are doing it tough, and things are progressing from bad to worse. Why is that?

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