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Articles on Political history

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The ‘White Australia’ ideology was commercialised and used to sell things from soaps and games to pineapple slices. Multicultural Research Library

Australian politics explainer: the White Australia policy

While contemporary Australia is proud of its multicultural status, the White Australia policy shows this wasn't always the case.
The British parliament passed the Commonwealth of Australia Constitution Act in 1900. Museum of Australian Democracy

Australian politics explainer: the writing of our Constitution

Australia's Constitution is a product of foreign and domestic political influences. It has become one of the enduring aspects of Australian politics and law, for better and worse.
A new book tells a detailed story of how policy decisions about pokies are actually made. AAP/Mick Tsikas

How one family used pokies and politics to extract a fortune from Tasmanians

In Tasmania, a changing cast of actors has colluded to grant extreme riches to a single family, extracted in large part from the state’s most disadvantaged citizens.
Australia must think differently about its relationship with the US under Donald Trump. Reuters/Carlos Barria

The tag is cut: how will the Trump-Turnbull spat damage the alliance?

Australian and American leaders over the years have, from time to time, disagreed or said things to cause embarrassment. But, for the most part, such disagreements have been kept out of the limelight.
Paul Keating took the prime ministership with a ‘comprehensive plan to get the country cracking’, but the task was daunting. National Archives of Australia

Cabinet papers 1992-93: the balance of head and heart

Labor’s project of economic transformation hit some harder realities as Paul Keating assumed the top job. And a new push on remaking Australia stirred a brooding reaction of its own.

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