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Sacks’ works have introduced readers to the marvellous complexities of the mind. Mars Hill Church Seattle/Flickr

Celebrating Oliver Sacks’ romantic science and a life now ending

The popular neurologist revealed earlier this year that he only has months to live – a statement which casts his recently-released memoir, On the Move: A Life, in a new light.
Selling students short comes at an important time for higher education in Australia: funding uncertainties and questions over academic standards have never been more pronounced. from

Book review: Selling Students Short

Richard Hil’s Selling Students Short: Why You Won’t Get the Education You Deserve is a timely exposé of the difficult conditions facing students at Australia’s increasingly corporatised universities.
Salman Rushdie claims not to have realised his GoodReads ratings were public. EPA/Helmut Fohringer

Should authors Rushdie to judgment as book reviewers?

Negative reaction by other authors to Salman Rushdie’s book ratings demonstrates how sensitive writers can be. But why shouldn’t an author give however many stars they like to a book?
A recent book of Brett Whiteley’s drawings reveals his extraordinary talents as a draughtsman. Wendy sleeping (1973). Pen, brush and brown ink. 29.9x33.4 cm. Brett Whiteley Estate © Wendy Whiteley. Beagle Press

Brett Whiteley’s drawings reveal the artist as a master draughtsman

Some 23 years after his death, Australian artist Brett Whitely's vision continues to have resonance and will likely remain a defining representation of late 20th century Australia.
Good reviewers don’t need editors to fight their battles. Luke Larsson

Self-defence for book reviewers

It is perfectly understandable for an editor to be protective of his own patch, but it is worrying when the editor of a national magazine, which claims to be the leading independent Australian literary…
A new collection takes stock of the four decades that have passed since the publication of Dennis Altman’s landmark book, Homosexual. malstad

Noted works: After Homosexual

Noted Works is a new series on The Conversation devoted to long-form reviews of significant new books. See the end for further details. Dennis Altman was a young, articulate activist and out gay man when…
All serious writers should take their own work, and the efforts of others, seriously. photosteve101

Book reviewing is an art, in its own way

There should be no hard and fast rules concerning book reviewing. That’s because reviewing constitutes a worthy genre in its own right, one that should not be limited by guidelines or mandates. Criticism…
Let’s not underestimate the intellectual goodwill that sustains our literary culture. Antoine Robiez

In defence of book reviewers in Australia

Book reviewers and the editors of periodicals that commission them are used to sour assessments of their worth, but Professor John Dale’s article on The Conversation yesterday is in a class of its own…

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