Prepare to be a gangster?

Prepare to be a gangster?

Recently, on Richard Feidler’s Conversations, I heard the story of John ‘Chow’ Hayes, a notorious Sydney gangster. Chow was born in 1911, the illegitimate son of a prostitute. His upbringing was erratic; he did not attend school after his 8th birthday. He grew up in poverty and a world traumatised by the effects of WW1.

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Does Christianity foster violence?

Does Christianity foster violence?

Again, I find myself captivated by ‘Jerusalem, Jerusalem: How the Ancient City Ignited Our Modern World,’ a book which surveys history and theology over several thousand years, focussing on humanity’s alarming predisposition to embrace and bless violence, primarily through religion. The book focusses on Jerusalem. In this ancient city...

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Where do you come from?

Where do you come from?

My father was a minister, as was my grandfather, on my mother’s side. (What chance did I have? I did resist ministry for some time, only saying ‘Yes’ after experimenting with other pathways for some years.) Now, with more of my life behind me than ahead, I look back to these two men and wonder,

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Would you believe it?

Would you believe it?

Happy New Year to all! I hope 2019 offers you many opportunities to wonder and gain new insights. Recently, I returned from a few days’ break in Canberra. While there, a book came to my attention, which quickly captivated me. It is the story of the forged Adolf Hitler diaries, which surfaced in the early

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On doubt and identity

On doubt and identity

Leigh Sales has written a helpful little monograph, ‘On Doubt,’ in which she interrogates the experience of doubting, and traces the emergence of an approach to journalism – her own. Presumably, this approach is one reason she is an excellent interviewer; she remains open to unexpected responses, and doesn’t assume that she knows...

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Think outside the square

Think outside the square

The other day, I read about the young American congresswoman, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who has made quite an impression since being elected. She is young, charismatic and articulate. More than this, she stands aside from the norms of political debate, enthralling and futile as they are; she stands apart from the dictates of public...

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