The Fifth Estate
Public Health and Drug Policy Today
Sally Warhaft, Richard Di Natale and Fiona Patten in discussion at the Wheeler Centre — Photo: Jon Tjhia
In the 1980s, Australia was an early adopter of free needle syringe distribution programmes. At the height of the AIDS epidemic, this controversial harm-reduction strategy played a crucial role in mitigating the spread of HIV among Australian injecting drug-users.
Despite our history of success with harm-reduction approaches, legislators – and large portions of the public – remain squeamish about these policies. Across Australia, parliaments are still more inclined to pass punitive anti-drug laws. But is this working, and is this even cost-effective, in the context of our spreading problems with ice?
Richard Di Natale and Fiona Patten both worked, in differing capacities, in public health prior to their careers in politics. Both have been vocal and active with regards to drug legislation since entering parliament. With Sally Warhaft, the pair discuss the possibilities and limitations of harm reduction in Australia.
Fiona Patten — Photo: Jon Tjhia
Richard Di Natale — Photo: Jon Tjhia
Dead Calm: Grief
People die. When it’s those dear to us, we each carry the task of reconciling life and death – theirs and ours. Grief is the name we give to that often sad, overwhelming process.
So, how well-equipped are we to deal with grief – and what more could we learn about it? Do we have the right emotional skills and social…
For many of us, death is an incredibly confronting topic – the stuff of solemn silence, implacable grief or a very particular kind of fear. For others, it’s a defining mystery of living, a necessary finality; even its own kind of miracle. How much can we actually know about death?
Joined at the table by Pia Interlandi, Hayley West and Elizabeth…
Writers since time immemorial have connected food and sex. How could we resist?
For our second Speakeasy, we’ll get into the complexity – and deceptive simplicity – of sex, erotic writing, gender, identity and desire, with Dani Weber, Angela Serrano and Dion Kagan. If the brain really is the biggest sex organ, what could go wrong here?
Join us for dinner…
To writer Jenny Zhang, candid and subversive humour is an important ingredient in writing about marginalised groups. Women and people of colour, she explains, must have the opportunity to tell stories that deal not only with struggle, but with absurdity and joy. In conversation with Brodie Lancaster, Zhang talks about physicality, forging a fresh path as a writer and woman of…
The Wheeler Centre
To writer Jenny Zhang, candid and subversive humour is an important ingredient in writing about marginalised groups. Women and people of colour, she explains, must have the opportunity to tell stories that deal not only with struggle, but with absurdity and joy. In conversation with Brodie Lancaster, Zhang talks about physicality, forging a fresh path as a writer and woman of colour, and the complexity of autobiographical readings of her fiction.
Brodie Lancaster and Jenny Zhang — Photo: Jon Tjhia
Her essays and poems were already earning accolades from Rookie readers, but Zhang thought she was being catfished when Lena Dunham tweeted to say she loved her work. She wasn’t.
Dunham – the real Dunham – wanted Zhang to write the first book published by her new Random House imprint. The result, 2017’s Sour Heart, is a collection of short stories about Chinese-American girls and young women growing up in New York – the daughters of artists who fled the chaos of Mao’s China, only to wind up struggling to survive in a new country. Her stories traverse generations and continents, from public school in Queens to the streets of Shanghai during the Cultural Revolution.
Anything and everything in Bodies from across our archives.
The Interrobang: A Festival of Questions
Is the attainment of physical beauty a classist pursuit? Anne Summers
Explore these other subjects, across our site.