The Hundred-Foot Journey

cc attribution share alike http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val.jpg

The Hundred Foot Journey, plays out against a physically short distance, yet the distance that keeps the people involved apart, is vast. The movie tells the story of a meeting between two cooking cultures:  Indian and French. Both are proud of their cooking traditions. An Indian family, displaced some time before to England by political violence in their home country,…

Crossing Over: does immigration policy discriminate?

Graphs of migration planning levels for Australia http://www.immi.gov.au/media/statistics/statistical-info/visa-grants/ creative commons licence 3.0 attribution

Does immigration policy discriminate?  The White Australia policy is gone – so we might conclude that it doesn’t.  And indeed Australia would be unrecognisable to those who created the White Australia policy at the end of the 19th century. Times change and such racist practices are now a condemned part of the past. Today Australia celebrates the diversity and strength…

No lines exist – Which sector off the sky

Girl offers peace prayers at launch of peace lanterns

On 4 August 2014, it seems better to remember peace.  These verses are examples of poetry from around the world which express an aspiration for peace. It was our hope That all the world’s oceans Be joined in peace So why do the winds and waves Now rise up in angry rage? No lines exist Which sector off the sky…

A journey out of endless war

A journey

The anonymous words below come from the reflections of a young person who arrived in Australia as a refugee.  She is currently in Australian immigration detention.  Her words were submitted to the national inquiry currently being undertaken by Australian Human Rights Commission into children in immigration detention.  Links to national inquiry and her full submissions are provided below. I am…

Belle

Belle poster

Humans are complex beings.  The movie “Belle” (director Amma Assante) explores human complexity, particularly as it manifests in everyday human relationships. The movie is set in the late eighteenth century at the height of the transatlantic slave trade.  Dido Elizabeth Belle (played by Gugu Mbatha-Raw) is the central character of the movie.  She was born into slavery, but her father, Captain…

Hiroshima

8.15 am 6 August 1945 atomic bombing

An old eucalyptus tree grows in the ruins of Hiroshima Castle.  Although only 750 metres from ground zero when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima at 8.15 am on 6 August 1945, the eucalyptus tree survived and still lives.  All around it for miles about was destroyed. Warfare has not been central to the discussion that has unfolded on…

Fifty Million

refugeesinsyria

Not since World War II have there been more than 50 million refugees and displaced people in the world. On 19 June 2014 the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees announced that this total had been exceeded in 2013. Half of those displaced are children. The primary cause of this increase in human suffering are violent conflict in places such…

Gattaca: a dystopian past, present and future

View from the Space Port

It’s hard to work out if the 1997 movie Gattaca presents a vision of triumph or failure of humanity. It presents a dystopian future which echoes the dystopian elements of our present and past. In this future, people are judged solely by their genetic scorecard.  Those whose parents do not engineer them for success before birth are marked out as…

A Fitting Memorial

Polos conmemorativos  para aquellos que murieron en el SIEVX fueron erigidos  por australianas escolares y grupos de la Iglesia y comunidad  en Canberra.

On or around 14 November 2010 another 97 men, women and children lost their lives as asylum seekers crossing the sea to Australia. The recent Four Corners  report (which focussed also on the people smuggler network involved) explored something of the lives of those lost. We here record their names, and what few details that Four Corners published concerning their lives.   Such…