Lot's Wife Edition 1 2017

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MONDAY 4 – 9 PM<br />



TUESDAY 9 PM – 1 AM<br />



WED – THURS 8 – 11 PM<br />



FRIDAY 9 – 11 PM<br />


MAX<br />


FRIDAY 11 AM – 10 PM<br />



Contents<br />

07.<br />

Student Affairs<br />

Office Bearer Reports<br />

Wot’s News?<br />

Clubs & Societies<br />

A Medley Of Evil<br />

Thoughts On Living Abroad<br />

Unions Are Important: Analysing NUS<br />

Make Education Free Again<br />

19.<br />

Politics Society<br />

27.<br />

Science Engineering<br />

35.<br />

Arts Culture<br />

Trump: A Nation Divided<br />

Logged In<br />

“If You’re Australian, Why Aren’t You White?”<br />

Yes... We Tried<br />

STI Rates Amoungst University Students<br />

Climate Change: You Can Be The Difference<br />

Healthy Skepticism<br />

Tips For Everyday Science Student<br />

Science News<br />

The Tension Between Artistic And Moral Judgements<br />

Artists Should Be Punished, Not Celebrated<br />

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds: Gig Review<br />

MUST General Program<br />

The Price Of Gaming<br />

The Disruption Of ‘The White Cube’<br />

Why We Love Migos And Other Songs About Nothing<br />

45.<br />

Creative Comedy<br />

How To Be The ‘Best Modern Man’ You Can Be<br />

Love Affair With Cinque Terre<br />

Burnt In Bali<br />

Going Home: A Cycle In Self Discovery<br />

MS Word Enjoys Itself<br />

Wot’s Life? With Agony Aunt

Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong><br />

Editors<br />

Emina Besirevic<br />

Nick Bugeja<br />

Sophia McNamara<br />

Rob Staunton<br />

Design<br />

Hana Crowl<br />

edition one<br />

lot’s wife<br />

Sub-editors<br />

Student Affairs<br />

Caitlin McIvor<br />

Dylan Marshall<br />

Sophie Ng<br />

Devika Pandit<br />

Arts & Culture<br />

Tim Davies<br />

Nick Jarrett<br />

Clarissa Kwee<br />

Linh Nguyen<br />

Creative & Comedy<br />

Manon Boutin Charles<br />

John Henry<br />

Georgina Lee<br />

Shona Louis<br />

Elizabeth Yu<br />

Science & Engineering<br />

Tracy Chen<br />

Shreeya Luthra<br />

Isaac Reichman<br />

Rachael Welling<br />

Politics & Society<br />

Mollie Ashworth<br />

Ben Caddaye<br />

Jessica Lehmann<br />

Lachlan Llesfield<br />

Campus Reporters<br />

Joanne Fong<br />

Jessie Lu<br />

Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> is entirely run, written, illustrated, edited and designed by students.<br />

If you would like to get involved, we are always looking for new contributors!<br />

Say hi anytime:<br />

Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> Office<br />

1st Floor, Campus Centre,<br />

Turn right at the MSA desk<br />

Or email us at msa-lotswife@monash.edu<br />

Advertising enquires:<br />

msa-lotswife@monash.edu<br />

Cover art by Maria Chamakala<br />

As you read this magazine you are on Aboriginal land. Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> recognises the<br />

Wurundjeri and Boon Wurrung people of the Kulin Nations as the historical and<br />

rightful owners and custodians of the lands which this magazine was produced<br />

on. This land was stolen and never ceded.<br />

Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> condemns and will not publish any material that is objectionable<br />

or discriminatory in any nature. The views expressed herein are those of the<br />

attributed writers and do not necessarily reflect the views of the editors or the<br />

Monash Student Association. All writing and artwork remains the property of<br />

the producers and must not be reproduced without their written consent.

Hello Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> readers! And a special hello to all the bright-eyed first years who may<br />

be reading this for the first time, and have no idea what they have gotten themselves into<br />

for the following years. It has been a whirlwind past few months: with all four of us doing<br />

some form of summer school, trying to put together a magazine for the first time, and<br />

recovering from the fact that Hillary Clinton did not win the election as she may have did<br />

in our dreams (Jill Stein 2020 though, am I right?). At least we’ve still got Bernie fighting<br />

the good fight.<br />

The first few weeks of the year are always daunting – trying to find your new classrooms,<br />

wondering if you regret taking that complicated Japanese unit that you thought was a great<br />

idea in January, and resisting the urge to feel completely overwhelmed and settle for a job<br />

selling healing crystals instead. And while America may not be looking that great again,<br />

there’s a protest coming up in the city to make education free again. If the HECS debt<br />

happens to be getting you down, join the National Union of Students on March 22 in the<br />

National Day of Action and show Turnbull what’s up.<br />

Life’s not all that bleak though – Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> is finally back and we have articles on Trump,<br />

climate change, study tips, and new comedy section that may or may not be funny, but hey,<br />

we tried. So sit back, enjoy the words and illustrations, and tell your friends how much you<br />

love the first edition of Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> for <strong>2017</strong>.<br />

But, before you sit back too far that you fall off your chair, we encourage anyone who<br />

has something interesting to say to pitch and submit their work for future editions. This<br />

can be done by getting into contact with us at msa-lotswife@monash.edu or by liking our<br />

Facebook page and joining our Facebook group Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> General Contributors <strong>2017</strong>.<br />

l<br />

Rob, Emina, Sophia, and Nick<br />


edition one<br />

Letters to the<br />

lot’s wife<br />

Editor...<br />

Hi, I just came across reference to Lot’s<br />

<strong>Wife</strong> when looking up something else.<br />

I’m glad to see the old rag is still going! I<br />

was on the staff in 1969-1970 as a writer of<br />

articles, an official Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> Photographer<br />

(maybe the only one? Memories are vague),<br />

and I wrote at least one of the Jacquette<br />

cartoon strips (the racy adventures of an<br />

innocent freshette). I remember we used to<br />

dag Molly Meldrum heaps. The Editor was<br />

a bloke who sadly ended up a paraplegic, or<br />

quaddie? due to a water skiing accident, and<br />

the office manager was a lovely lady called<br />

Margaret-Rose Dunphy.<br />

Monash was politically seething at the<br />

time, what with Albert Langer and Michael<br />

Hyde (??) being the top student activists<br />

back then. I vividly remember covering the<br />

first Moratorium for LW, and was almost<br />

pulled limb from limb by about 200 extreme<br />

Lefties after one student occupation of the<br />

Administration Offices, but was saved when<br />

a Channel 2 (0r 7??) news team turned up<br />

with cameras rolling.<br />

Of course, I had so much fun working<br />

for Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> that I failed my second year<br />

exams and never completed my Degree, but<br />

it all worked out for the best. I haven’t seen<br />

the campus since 1971, I used to park my<br />

motorbike in a gravel yard outside the Law<br />

Faculty. I doubt I’d recognise anything now.<br />

Even the Ming Wing has a new bit grafted<br />

on. I spent many hours on the tenth floor<br />

drinking coffee from the vending machine<br />

there.<br />

Ahhhh, memories!<br />

– Kim White<br />

Don’t forget to write letter’s to the editors for<br />

future editions.<br />

Covers of Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> from the 1970’s

MSA Calendar<br />

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday<br />

Orientation Week<br />

O Week<br />

MSA Orientation Festival<br />

MSA Orientation Festival<br />

Lemon-Scented Lawn<br />

Host Scheme Night<br />

Colonial Hotel 8pm-late<br />

MSA Orientation Festival<br />

Lemon-Scented Lawn<br />

Taco Tuesday and<br />

Tequila Sunrise<br />

Sir John’s Bar<br />

Lemon-Scented Lawn<br />

MSA Breakfast Club<br />

Sir John’s Bar 8.30-10am<br />

Hump Day BBQ<br />

Lemon-Scented Lawn<br />

12pm<br />

Mature Aged & Part Time Student (MAPS) Week<br />

MSA Orientation Festival<br />

Lemon-Scented Lawn<br />

MSA Welfare Department<br />

Free Dinner<br />

Wholefoods 7.30pm<br />

Week<br />

MSA Breakfast<br />

One<br />

Club<br />

MSA Welfare Department<br />

Free Food Mondays<br />

Wholefoods 7.30pm<br />

MSA Tuesdays<br />

MSA Members Week<br />

Taco Tuesday and<br />

Tequila Sunrise<br />

Sir John’s Bar<br />

Sir John’s Bar 8.30-10am<br />

Hump Day BBQ<br />

Lemon-Scented Lawn<br />

12pm<br />

Zest Fest Clubs Day<br />

MSA Orientation Festival<br />

Lemon-Scented Lawn<br />

MSA Welfare Department<br />

Free Dinner<br />

Wholefoods 7.30pm<br />

Week<br />

MSA Breakfast<br />

Two<br />

Club<br />

MSA Welfare Department<br />

Free Food Mondays<br />

Wholefoods 7.30pm<br />

Taco Tuesday and<br />

Tequila Sunrise<br />

Sir John’s Bar<br />

MSA Queer Department<br />

Trivia Night<br />

Wholefoods<br />

Education (Public Affairs) Week<br />

Sir John’s Bar 8.30-10am<br />

Week<br />

MSA Breakfast<br />

Three<br />

Club<br />

MSA Welfare Department<br />

Free Food Mondays<br />

Wholefoods 7.30pm<br />

Welfare Week<br />

Taco Tuesday and<br />

Tequila Sunrise<br />

Sir John’s Bar<br />

Sir John’s Bar 8.30-10am<br />

Make Education Free<br />

Week Four<br />

MSA Welfare Department<br />

Free Food Mondays<br />

Wholefoods 7.30pm<br />

2o 21 22 23 24<br />

27 28 01 02 03<br />

06 07 08 09 10<br />

13 14 15 16 17<br />

Taco Tuesday and<br />

Tequila Sunrise<br />

Sir John’s Bar<br />

MSA Queer Department<br />

Karaoke Night<br />

Sir John’s Bar<br />

Again - National Day of<br />

Action<br />

Lemon-Scented Lawn<br />

BBQ 12pm<br />

State Library Bus 1pm<br />

Protest 2pm<br />

2o 21 22 23 24<br />




Want to quit? We can support you.<br />

Register at monash.edu/smoke-free<br />

Produced by SMC Monash: 16P-1801. December 2016.<br />

Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> is a student-run publication that relies on your sweat and toil<br />

If you’re a writer or artist, we want to publish your<br />

fantastic work!<br />

Send us an email at msa-lotswife@monash.edu<br />

or drop by our office on the 1st floor of the Campus Centre<br />


Relationships, When it comes be to sex, they consent partners, is friends the most or important family, can part. be a great<br />

part In Victoria, of life, consent but sometimes means behaviours a ‘free agreement’, that we can so for brush someone off as<br />

someone to consent 'just they showing need to how understand much they what care' they’re can agreeing actaully be to,<br />

harmful communicate or dangerous. their consent Relationships by words should and/or be actions about the equality, whole<br />

respect time, and and be open agreeing communication. of their own free These will, are not some out of red fear flags or force. you<br />

should look for before or during any relationship.<br />

MONASH<br />


T: +61 3 9905 1599<br />

E: safercommunity@monash.edu<br />

monash.edu<br />

How can you make sure you have consent?<br />

• Remember, it’s your job to ask. Try asking, “Do you want me to…?”<br />

and only act if they say yes.<br />

• Pay attention to their body language, and make sure to stop and<br />

check in if they look uncomfortable<br />

• Never make or act on assumptions on what someone is agreeing to<br />

without asking them.<br />

• Remember that if someone is too intoxicated to consent, asleep or<br />

unconscious, they can’t consent.<br />

Never The reality date is someone that engaging out of in pity any and sexual trust act your without instincts. consent If these is an<br />

behaviours act of violence, sound it’s familiar, a crime the and Safer it’s wrong. Community Unit can help.<br />

For For information, advice advice and and support support in in a safe safe environment, environment, please please contact contact the the Monash Monash University University Safer Safer Community Community Unit Unit on on 9905 9905<br />

1599 1599 or or just just dial dial 51599 51599 from from a Monash Monash phone.The phone.The Safer Safer Community Community Unit Unit website website also also lists lists resources resources and and links links to to external external agencies agencies<br />

http://www.adm.monash.edu.au/safercommunity/<br />

Adapted from Surviving Stalking (2002) by Michele Pathé

contributers:<br />

sam allen<br />

jessie lu<br />

joanne fong<br />

jayden crozier<br />

bryda nichols<br />

dolly png<br />

nick bugeja<br />

isabella toppi<br />

juliet steele<br />

jasmine duff<br />

audrey chmielewski<br />

Student Affairs<br />

student affairs<br />


edition one<br />

lot’s wife<br />



Welcome one and all to <strong>2017</strong> at Monash University!<br />

The MSA is your student union, here to make your<br />

university experience as vibrant and as positive as<br />

possible! We run a range of social events for our<br />

members, provide student advocacy and support,<br />

organise activist campaigns around both local and<br />

national student issues, and do our best to service<br />

the needs of students. I hope you get an opportunity<br />

to join a few of our many clubs and societies during<br />

O-Week, and gain some insight into the various campaigns<br />

our departments will be rolling out this year. I also look forward to seeing<br />

you at our Members Week during week 2! We have lots of free and fun filled<br />

events planned for you to thank you for being a part of your student union.<br />

Because the MSA is run by students for students, I would love to hear from<br />

YOU as to what changes you would like to see implemented at Monash, or<br />

if you need any assistance whatsoever during your time here. Please feel free<br />

to get in touch with me at any point! See you all around! It’s going to be a<br />

great year.<br />



‘Ey Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> readers! Hope you’re settling into uni<br />

and enjoying the blissful first days until the crushing<br />

weight of assignments and exams settles in. I’m the<br />

MSA Treasurer. I share an office with Jessica, the MSA<br />

Secretary, and if needed I can be found on level one of<br />

Campus Centre between the President and Education<br />

Academic Affairs! Alongside the President, Matilda,<br />

we make up the executive of the MSA. Our jobs vary<br />

day to day, but mainly I look after the budget and make<br />

sure your money is being put to good use! I work alongside<br />

the departments to help them plan and budget for projects and campaigns.<br />

I’ve been helping with enrolment week and visiting Host Scheme camps, and<br />

dispersed information to the departments outlining their financial budgets.<br />

I’m extremely excited to be involved in the running of new events and<br />

campaigns this year, and talking to and engaging with students in the MSA.<br />

Coming up we have O-Week, which we’ve put loads of time and planning into<br />

making super fun and rewarding for you guys! Come join me for Members<br />

Week from the 6th to the 10th of March! A week all about giving back to<br />

our MSA members. Please come to us if you’re having any issues whatsoever,<br />

make sure you join some clubs and societies during O-Week, and purchase an<br />

MSA card so that you can reap the benefits of supporting your student union!<br />



Hi everyone and welcome back to another year at this<br />

eternal construction site and if you’re new, welcome<br />

to Monash (yes it’s always like this)! I’m Jess, the<br />

Secretary of the MSA, and I have been hard at work<br />

making sure that this year kicks off with a splash.<br />

The Orientation Festival is four jam-packed days<br />

happening from the 20th to the 23rd of February with<br />

opportunities to join clubs, eat tonnes of free food<br />

and importantly meet the <strong>2017</strong> MSA Office Bearers (I’ll<br />

be the one in orange frantically running around). Come<br />

to the big marquee to have a chat to all of us. Also don’t forget to join the<br />

MSA! It’s only $20 for the year and you get heaps of cool discounts on food<br />

at uni and any MSA run event. If you have any questions about the MSA, feel<br />

free to shoot me an email at jessica.stone@monash.edu.<br />

WELFARE:<br />


Hey Monash students! Just calling in to introduce this<br />

year’s Welfare department and welcome you all back<br />

for another semester of torment. Nick and Patrick<br />

are your representatives this year, and just quietly,<br />

we’re bloody excited about it. If you’ve got a spare<br />

moment, here is some insight into what we’ve been<br />

up to, and what our plans for the future are. Many of<br />

you will not only be aware of, but will have been swept<br />

into the vortex that is the Centrelink automated debt<br />

recovery disaster. Now, one of the most overused words<br />

in political discourse is that of ‘disaster,’ however this has been a bloody<br />

train-wreck. We have been involving the Welfare department with campaigns<br />

surrounding the inefficiencies and injustices of the current system. On<br />

a lighter note, we will be continuing to run our classic Free Food Monday<br />

event. There is nothing that students can be more united around than free<br />

food, and as such we will be delivering this service with as much conviction<br />

as ever. We hope that by the end of the year there will be a functioning<br />

Centrelink advisory service on campus, an increased number of asylum<br />

seeker scholarships and some weekly yoga sessions for those who need some<br />

time to relax. Naturally, if you feel as though your time at university is not up<br />

to scratch, please come visit us and we’ll turn over a few rocks and even poke<br />

a few bears if necessary. Please contact us at nicholas.virgo@monash.edu and<br />

patrick.stephenson@monash.edu.<br />



Welcome to our first report back in Lot’s <strong>Wife</strong> - it’s an<br />

exciting time to be alive and an exciting time to be<br />

reading what your lovely Education Public Affairs<br />

Officers have been up to. Corey and Juliet are here<br />

to fight for you in regards to university, state and<br />

federal policy. Our first campaign for this year, in<br />

conjunction with the National Union of Students,<br />

is the fight for publicly funded higher education.<br />

The government fully funds you to go to school, but<br />

secondary education is no longer the minimum required<br />

to get a job in society. Make Education Free Again is the <strong>2017</strong> campaign to<br />

restore government funding for universities to allow more people to access<br />

tertiary education and contribute to our society. Also keep an eye out for our<br />

Activate Monash Leadership Program, designed to equip you with the skills<br />

to create change at Monash and in the wider community - check out www.<br />

facebook.com/ActivateMonash to submit your application!<br />



Welcome to <strong>2017</strong> friends! Especially all the first years!<br />

We hope you’re enjoying your time at Monash and<br />

that university is everything you hoped it’d be! (How<br />

good is the Schnitz on campus??) Over the past<br />

month and a half we have been organising student<br />

volunteers for Academic Progress Committee<br />

Hearings (APC). APCs, for those you who don’t<br />

know, are hearings that students have to face if they<br />

have failed 50% of their units over the year. The role<br />

of the student representative is to listen to the student’s<br />

case, and alongside the other committee members, to find the best outcome.<br />

Some outcomes include recommending support-services or other assistance<br />

to help them lift their academic performance. This year we will be working<br />

towards getting more power outlets in lecture theaters as well as furthering<br />

the campaign to ensure fairer assessment policies and an university wide<br />

‘opt-out’ process for lecture recordings instead of the current opt-in system.<br />

If you have any issues with your studies, teaching staff or assessment policies<br />

feel free to email us at msa-education@monash.edu. Everything you say is<br />

completely confidential. Enjoy O-Week and the first month back!



Sarah Harris and Sean Glass are the Activities Office<br />

Bearers for <strong>2017</strong>! We will be working hard to bring<br />

Monash Clayton students fun events such as pub<br />

crawls, trivia nights and after exam parties all<br />

year round. But the fun isn’t just for after hours<br />

events, the dynamic duo will also be feeding the<br />

hungry masses with free Hump Day barbecues!<br />

So if you’re ever in the mood for a snag or a<br />

hash brown come down and see Activities every<br />

Wednesday on the Lemon Scented Lawn. Also as an<br />

added bonus we’ve lined up live music acts to serenade you whilst you eat<br />

for the first 7 weeks of semester, how good is that?<br />





ESJ is a hub of left wing activism at Monash, uniting<br />

activists and progressives in combatting oppression and<br />

injustice. We organise left wing forums and protest<br />

campaigns on campus, fighting the government’s<br />

attacks on migrants, welfare, and working class people.<br />

As Trump’s attacks on Muslims have escalated, mass<br />

opposition has swept the United States. Inspired by<br />

that movement, we have organised thousands of people<br />

in Melbourne to protest against not only Trump but<br />

our own right wing government and their barbaric refugee<br />

policies. This year we’re part of the national campaign to Make Education<br />

Free Again. On March 22, students in every major city around the country will<br />

protest against the unacceptable living standards that students experience<br />

and for more accessible education. We want as many people involved as<br />

possible – that means you! To get involved, like us on facebook at MSA<br />

Environment & Social Justice or email msa-enviro-l@monash.edu.<br />

The MSA Indigenous Department exists to represent<br />

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students.<br />

Indigenous people are underrepresented in higher<br />

education and more likely to prematurely withdraw<br />

from their studies. Our department strives to provide<br />

support networks and advocacy for these students.<br />

This year’s office bearers – Jayden and Bryda – are<br />

committed to raising awareness about issues facing<br />

Indigenous students such as ITAS funding cuts, closing<br />

the gap, creation of an MSA Reconciliation Action Plan<br />

and the renaming of the John Medley Library. Similarly we aim to promote<br />

Indigenous culture on campus. Our first event of the year will be hosting<br />

the Wominjeka Monash Clayton on February 22nd. The event is during<br />

O-Week and will feature a traditional Indigenous Welcome to Country, led<br />

by Aunty Di Kerr and Aunty Carolyn Briggs. It will also be headlined by<br />

prominent Indigenous Australian artist, Dan Sultan, with local Monash<br />

student talent. We hope to see you there!<br />

WOMEN’S<br />


Hello fellow students, the Women’s Department has<br />

well and truly kicked off this year with planning<br />

underway for events, workshops and campaigns.<br />

Getting ready for O-Week is a heap of work for<br />

every department, and while we’ve been doing this<br />

we’ve also been preparing for a few post O-Week<br />

events, including a movie night for International<br />

Women’s Day (keep an eye on the big screen outside<br />

of campus centre)! There will be new surprises coming<br />

to the Women’s Room, so swing by if you haven’t before<br />

and hopefully we can unveil the changes soon. #watchthisspace! If you’re<br />

not very well acquainted with the Women’s Department, feel free to swing<br />

by upstairs campus centre! We’ve got plenty planned for this year, including<br />

NOWSA, a national women’s conference that we will be partaking in, so<br />

never hesitate to come along to something or express interest. Thnx v much<br />

xoxo ur women’s officers.<br />



Hello from the MSA Disabilities and Carers (D&C)<br />

Department. We have been working on plans for this<br />

coming semester, including organising a lounge<br />

space in our office for students to use, working<br />

towards making guides to study and how to get<br />

support, as well as working on ways to improve<br />

accessibility of MSA events and activism. We will<br />

be holding events like morning teas and discussion<br />

groups throughout the semester, find us on Facebook<br />

for more information and details. We look forward to an<br />

awesome year and a great first semester.<br />

student affairs<br />

QUEER<br />


Insert generic welcome. Since we’re always accused of<br />

having a gay agenda, Monash Queer Department has<br />

gone to great pains to stay on theme. This includes:<br />

LGBTea, Queer Beers, plotting discussions and<br />

workshops. We’ve already had a great glittery start<br />

to the year with our Monash contingent marching<br />

at Pride and a picnic afterwards. But the events are<br />

still coming. We’d love to see people check out our<br />

trivia night in week 2. Keep your eyes open for our<br />

Karaoke Night and Queer Ball. Feel intimidated visiting<br />

our lounge on level 1 of campus centre? We’re having friendly intro sessions<br />

for the first few weeks for new students (or veteran students but new to the<br />

lounge). Please check out our Facebook page, Monash Queer Department -<br />

MSA. You can follow for all the updates and get in direct contact with the<br />

Queer Officers for more info.<br />



It’s the START of something NEWWWW and it<br />

feels so right to be here with YOU! Ohhh ~ It’s<br />

Jasmine and Kapil, your officers from the brand<br />

new People of Colour (PoC) Department! The<br />

PoC Department’s main function is to support,<br />

unite, represent and empower students of colour.<br />

We’ve been busy sorting out the office, regulations<br />

and social media. We’ve also been talking to clubs<br />

and planning campaigns and events for the year. To<br />

name a few, keep an eye out for the Holi festival with the<br />

Hindu Society and the United Colours of Monash campaign. Since this is<br />

the Department’s first year, our intention is to make sure we start it with<br />

a BANG by reaching out to as many people as possible so we can build<br />

together a stronger, more inclusive and diverse community.<br />

Jasmine Nguyen: jasmine.nguyen@monash.edu<br />

Kapil Bhargava: kapil.bhargava@monash.edu<br />

OBR<br />

Office Bearer Reports<br />


edition one<br />

lot’s wife<br />

Orientation Festival, Dan Sultan, and Zest Fest!<br />

For all jaffys and newcomers, the Monash Student<br />

Association (MSA) annual Orientation Festival is on at the<br />

Lemon Scented Lawns from the 20th to 23rd of February.<br />

Enjoy free food and entertainment as Monash showcases<br />

its diverse clubs, societies and sporting teams. In<br />

addition, there are special events each day of O-week.<br />

Key highlights are: Wominjeka Monash, the official<br />

Welcome to Monash event that is celebrating Indigenous<br />

culture with a feature performance by Dan Sultan as well<br />

as the Beach Party to be held at the Royal Melbourne<br />

Hotel, presented by Monash Engineering Students’<br />

Society and the Society of Arts Students. The Student<br />

Theatre will be running their Harry Potter themed O-Show<br />

with four shows each day until Thursday. Roaming Host<br />

Scheme volunteers are available to give all new students<br />

a hand. Don’t be stressed if you can’t make it to O-week<br />

though, as Zest Fest, held on March 1st, will be an<br />

extension of the clubs days with the Soundshell and<br />

Northern Plaza hosting live performances and comedy<br />

acts. Further details on all events can be found at the<br />

MSA social media pages, Facebook events and Monash<br />

Orientation Planner.<br />

Monash Welcomes Diversity in Response to Trump’s<br />

Executive Order<br />

In an email addressed to all Monash staff and students,<br />

the President and Vice Chancellor of Monash University,<br />

Professor Margaret Gardner AO has expressed Monash’s<br />

continued commitment to internationalism, diversity and<br />

inclusion. In response to the US travel ban for citizens of<br />

the specified countries in Trump’s Executive Order, she<br />

condemned its negative impact on global collaboration<br />

and tolerance of people from all backgrounds. Monash<br />

does not support President Trump’s recent overarching<br />

measures. Monash’s policy embraces the “free exchange<br />

of ideas that is vital to the education and research of<br />

universities” and emphasises diversity and inclusion as<br />

remaining core to its values.<br />

Summerfest <strong>2017</strong><br />

To celebrate the end of summer, Summerfest kicks<br />

off at the Clayton and Caulfield campuses from the 13th<br />

-17th of March. So far, the Full Moon Party has been<br />

announced for the Tuesday with the gigantic waterslide<br />

making a return along with DJs, face paint, food and<br />

drinks. Tickets are available via MSA outlets for $20.<br />

Watch out for further announcements including the Dive-<br />

In Cinema at the Doug Ellis Swimming Pool, foodies’<br />

night, comedy, live music, markets and more.<br />

M-Pass<br />

The new Monash student ID, the M-Pass, will be rolled<br />

out in February and March, and it will be sent to students’<br />

addresses. The transition period will last until April, and<br />

after this the M-Pass will be used as official Monash ID,<br />

even in exams. The current ID will be required for secure<br />

building access until updates are completed. Library<br />

services such as borrowing, printing and photocopying<br />

will only be accessible with the M-Pass, some through<br />

online credit. Head to Monash Connect with your old<br />

student ID to collect your M-Pass if you haven’t yet<br />

received it.<br />

National Student Protests<br />

Students across the country will gather on March 22nd<br />

in protest of government cuts to education and welfare<br />

for the National Day of Action. The demonstration at<br />

the State Library is organised by the National Union of<br />

Students. The Monash contingent will be meeting on the<br />

Lemon Scented Lawn at 12pm. Juliet Steel and Jasmine<br />

Duff elaborate on page 17.<br />

Counselling Restructures<br />

Monash is going ahead with their plan to cut one third<br />

of the full-time-equivalent (FTE) counsellors and replace<br />

them with contractor or private practice psychologists.<br />

This has been met with student disdain, as it will mean<br />

fewer services provided for free drop-in consultations,<br />

as psychologists require GP referral. It is feared that the<br />

incoming psychologists will lack institutional knowledge.<br />

Counsellors will be lost en masse and students dealing<br />

with issues not deemed serious enough for a psychologist<br />

will face longer wait times. Criticism from the National<br />

Tertiary Education Union points out the hypocrisy in<br />

the university heavily promoting R U OK? Day, whilst<br />

reducing its mental health services.<br />

WOT’S<br />

NEWS?<br />

With Jessie Lu<br />

Refurbished Matheson Library Offers Some Welcome<br />

Relief from Construction<br />

Major construction works around Clayton campus are<br />

continuing with the Learning and Teaching Building by<br />

the bus loop whilst the fully refurbished Matheson Library<br />

reopens. Other projects that are expected to be near<br />

completion are the Monash Transport Interchange and<br />

the Forum, which encompasses the area between the<br />

Campus Centre and Matheson Library.<br />

This comes as Monash powers forward with their<br />

Masterplan, the framework for campus development<br />

envisioning the transformation into a ‘university city’.<br />

Although the construction comes as an annoyance<br />

to many current students with the ‘great blue wall of<br />

Clayton’ still standing, future students will benefit greatly<br />

from a revitalised campus.<br />

The comprehensive refurbishment of the Sir Louis<br />

Matheson Library is expected to be completed in time<br />

for Semester 1 with a new seating capacity of 1,500.<br />

This follows the opening of the updated Lower Ground<br />

level in mid-July last year with modern study spaces.<br />

The introduction of the Forum, which will fill the area<br />

between the Matheson library and the Menzies Building<br />

will complement the reinvigorated library. Landscaping<br />

works are taking place to finish the new water feature and<br />

decked courtyard, replacing the previous water fountain<br />

near the Rotunda.<br />

The new Monash Transport Interchange which boasts<br />

improved integration of bus, cycling and pedestrian<br />

services was set to open in February <strong>2017</strong>. However,<br />

additional works may continue into the future. The LTB<br />

is scheduled to open in mid-2018 with four storeys<br />

of learning space, innovative technology and a retail<br />

precinct. The sustainability of the Masterplan has been<br />

a key concern with the installation of nearly 4,000 solar<br />

panels and a water harvesting system, which will include<br />

a filtration rain garden. Future works are to include a new<br />

200-seat Jazz Club, a Sound Bar replacing Rotunda and<br />

the refurbishment of the Alexander Theatre, scheduled to<br />

open in 2018.<br />

JCU Under Pressure After Promoting a Convicted<br />

Rapist<br />

Controversy shrouds James Cook University following<br />

revelations that former employee Douglas Steele<br />

was promoted to a senior position with JCU advising<br />

Indigenous students after being charged of rape. He was<br />

permitted to remain employed whilst awaiting sentencing<br />

even after Vice Chancellor Sandra Harding was made<br />

aware of his charge. JCU is now purportedly conducting<br />

an investigation into its sexual assault policies after<br />

criticism of its slow response.<br />

Renaming of John Medley Library<br />

The Monash Student Council has authorised the<br />

renaming of the MSA-run John Medley Library, to the<br />

Mick Dodson Library after realisations that John Medley<br />

was involved in eugenics that was linked to the White<br />

Australia Policy. Mick Dodson was the first Monash<br />

Indigenous graduate to hold a Bachelor of Laws, however<br />

the new name is yet to be confirmed. Further details on<br />

page 14.<br />

MSA Space<br />

The new MSA space run by the Monash Student<br />

Association has opened on the ground floor of the<br />

Campus Centre. It is currently offering a dry cleaning<br />

service, bicycle products, event tickets and student<br />

printing with more to come.<br />

New Nature Walk<br />

The Jock Marshall Reserve at Clayton is now open to<br />

public following the opening of the new Nature Walk last<br />

November. This includes a footbridge to allow greater<br />

accessibility to the reserve.<br />

Robert Doyle Awarded with Honorary Doctorate<br />

Melbourne’s Lord Mayor, Robert Doyle was awarded<br />

his alma mater - Monash University’s highest honour - the<br />

Doctor of Laws, honoris causa. This was in recognition<br />

of his contributions to public life and his associations<br />

in industry and philanthropy. Doyle has recently been<br />

making headlines for targeting the homeless community<br />

by banning them from camping in the CBD.<br />

The same honorary doctorate was also conferred onto<br />

the Deputy Chancellor and Council member of Monash<br />

University, Clinical Professor Leanne Rowe, in recognition<br />

for her outstanding career in the fields of adolescent<br />

and Indigenous health and her service to the University.<br />

Jeanne Pratt, AC was also among the recipients.<br />

Carpooling Fee Remains Amidst Further Fee Hikes to<br />

Parking Permits<br />

Despite continued opposition and frustration by<br />

Monash students regarding the lack of available Blue<br />

permits and their cost, the university has yet again raised<br />

the cost. The yearly Blue permit has been elevated from<br />

$400 to $405 and from $200 in 2016 to $202.5 for the half<br />

yearly Blue permit, which have been selling for Clayton<br />

campus from the 7th of February.<br />

In 2016, the annual permits were sold out before<br />

the semester had even commenced, forcing hundreds<br />

of students to either park away from campus, join the<br />

waitlist or risk excessive fines. A major concern for<br />

students is the scarcity of parking spots. Some of the<br />

strain has been alleviated with the opening of a new level<br />

at the N1 car park, adding 1,170 spaces, as well as an<br />

underground car park at the new Learning and Teaching<br />

Building (LTB), touted to open mid-year with an additional<br />

800 parking spots. The overcrowding may be further<br />

relieved with the gradual introduction of new digital<br />

vehicle signage, providing live data on the availability of<br />

spaces. Free off campus parking will now only be limited<br />

to the Off-campus Two (OC2) car park with discounted<br />

parking being offered at the OC1 car park for $1 per hour<br />

or $5 all day.<br />

The Monash Student Association is continuing their<br />

lobbying efforts for reduced permit fees, the abolishment<br />

of the carpooling fee and better transport options for<br />

students. The MSA is committed to fighting permit fee<br />

increases following an unsuccessful campaign last year.<br />

The contentious introduction of the fees for Rideshare<br />

carpooling in 2016 has continued. Previously, specified<br />

areas for carpooling were free. The justification for the<br />

fee from Monash is to “deter misuse of the program and<br />

help genuine ride sharers find available parking”. The<br />

yearly fees have increased from $70 to $76 for each<br />

individual student to participate in the program. To secure<br />

a carpooling place, the combined worth of the yearly<br />

Rideshare permits will equate to at least $152. Students<br />

are being deterred from this program as individual Blue<br />

permits provide much more convenience for a little<br />

more money. This is worrying for Monash sustainability<br />

initiatives that are aimed at reducing vehicle emissions<br />

despite efforts to promote public transport, walking and<br />

cycling.<br />

Universal Changes to Engineering Degrees Cause a<br />

Stir<br />

At the close of October last year, all Engineering<br />

students were informed of the introduction of a new<br />

compulsory course requirement, named Continuous<br />

Professional Development (CPD). From Semester 1,<br />

<strong>2017</strong>, all Engineering students graduating after Semester<br />

1, <strong>2017</strong> will be required to undertake a minimum of<br />

105 hours of CPD, increasing by 105 hours for every<br />

additional year in the course, up to 420 hours for students<br />

anticipated to graduate at the end of 2020. The preferred<br />

method of accruing time through CPD is work experience<br />

with an engineering related firm.<br />

As with all major university announcements (such<br />

as the new standardised Business School calculator,<br />

closing of gym chicken and the Asian grocery), there was<br />

a uproar on Monash Stalkerspace. The primary concern<br />

was with the lateness of the announcement, considering<br />

all Engineering students graduating at the end of <strong>2017</strong>...

...or later would now be required to find ways to fulfil the CPD. This was at<br />

a time where a large portion of engineering summer internship applications<br />

had already closed and competition for any other engineering related roles<br />

would be very fierce.<br />

“My biggest issue with the system, is the manner in which they sprung<br />

it onto students. The fact that if I hadn’t done work on UAS (Unmanned<br />

Aerial Systems) and was graduating at the end of <strong>2017</strong>, I would need to<br />

have found an internship over these holidays, well after all applications<br />

had closed. It was poorly implemented considering no warning was given<br />

and not enough resources were devoted to helping students find these<br />

internships,” says Adhi-Raj Rana, a final year engineering student.<br />

Some support is provided from the university to students in completing<br />

the CPD through the Career Gateway portal and Monash is also offering<br />

work insurance cover for applicable students. The Monash Engineering<br />

Students’ Society also intends to guide any lost students.<br />

Overall however, the consensus among many Engineering students was<br />

that despite the large time commitment involved with CPD, it is a welcome<br />

addition to the course. CPD is proclaimed by the Engineering faculty to<br />

provide a “framework for students to find professional development<br />

opportunities that teach business related skills and enable students to<br />

gain business and engineering related knowledge”. Students can largely<br />

appreciate the thinking behind the introduction of the CPD, which is<br />

likely to put them in good stead with future employers and effectively<br />

force students to acquire real experience and professional skills in the<br />

engineering field.<br />

“I think the CPD is a great addition. There is no doubt there is difficulty<br />

getting an internship but too many people are graduating with ‘engineering’<br />

degrees without the foggiest clue on what the industry is like and with<br />

nothing to show on their resume. Furthermore, many grad jobs require<br />

or strongly prefer experience which students don’t realise because they<br />

haven’t had to get any experience,” Rana explains.<br />

There are alternatives to engineering based work experience in<br />

completing the CPD that can fill up to a specified quota of hours. Particular<br />

subjects from the engineering course will contribute to a proportion of<br />

required time, as well as work experience in any field, including regular<br />

jobs and participation in additional seminars, courses or volunteering.<br />

The flexibility of the program will assist students greatly in being able to<br />

complete the requirements.<br />

Unpaid internships are bound to fulfil a large proportion of students<br />

CPD hours. The introduction of the program comes at a time where<br />

some universities are moving away from unpaid internships due to ethical<br />

concerns. Columbia University in New York is limiting students’ exposure<br />

to unpaid work placements after efforts from Intern Labor Rights who are<br />

actively against the exploitation of unpaid labourers. UK universities such<br />

as University of the Arts London (UAL), Falmouth and Kingston have all<br />

stopped advertising unpaid internships positions on their student jobs<br />

websites. The efficacy of unpaid internships in assisting students with job<br />

opportunities is questionable and can also severely limit social mobility.<br />

The flexibility of Monash’s CPD may be able to counter this.<br />

Further criticism comes in the form of the lack of opportunities presented<br />

to students by the university itself. For students wanting to work to specific<br />

engineering fields, they are often left on their own.<br />

Rana shares some final thoughts. “I think the university doesn’t take<br />

enough initiative to create partnerships with companies (especially in the<br />

aero field). It has minimal contacts and therefore barely any internship<br />

partners for someone like me. It also makes minimal efforts to create them.<br />

Having presented the engineering faculty with possible partners (through<br />

the UAS team), I have seen them ignore some massive opportunities due<br />

to the required paperwork, despite the huge opening this would give to<br />

students.”<br />

It is only the beginning for the Continuous Professional Development<br />

requirement, which is intended to give engineering students a boost in their<br />

field experience and future work prospects. However, this is contingent<br />

on students being able to manage the commitment alongside their<br />

studies, their ability to find internships in relevant fields and willingness of<br />

engineering companies to value the contribution of these students.<br />

The University Council Election Outcome and<br />

Why You Should Care About It<br />

By Joanne Fong<br />

Elections – in particular, participating in them – are very important, as<br />

they determine who will obtain certain responsibilities and power to make<br />

decisions and changes that affect us. As can be seen in real life events such<br />

as Brexit and the US election in 2016, and with the protesting and aftermath<br />

that followed both, making your voice heard and casting your vote can<br />

really make or break a community.<br />

The Monash University Council is the highest governing body of<br />

Monash University. It is responsible for the management and activity of<br />

the university, including the approval of its annual budget, mission, and<br />

strategic direction. Academic Board, which reports to Council, oversees<br />

important duties including the governance of all university coursework, any<br />

changes to course entry requirements, as well as the Learning and Teaching<br />

portfolio which was partly responsible for the implementation of night<br />

exams. The Council is therefore responsible for the overall superintendence<br />

of the university, and facilitating its role in the Australian community.<br />

Thus, it is important that voting members on Council are able to make<br />

just, unbiased and competent decisions. Both the University Council and<br />

Academic Board take into consideration the reports and opinions of their<br />

respective elected student representatives. It is crucial these students are<br />

able to voice the best interests of students, especially as University Council<br />

meeting minutes are not available to be accessed by ordinary students, or<br />

even the Monash Student Association Executive.<br />

Along with the University Chancellor, Vice Chancellor, President of the<br />

Academic Board, twelve other appointed members, and an elected staff<br />

member, there is one position that is reserved for a student who is of equal<br />

status to the other Councillors. Eligible students are able to nominate for<br />

the position, and the broader student body then votes to democratically<br />

elect their chosen representative. The elected representative participates<br />

in the strategic decision making of Council, supposedly upholding the best<br />

interests and values of students. This includes responding to any proposed<br />

Federal budget cuts such as that of the student-opposed fee deregulation,<br />

for which Monash has previously shown support. The ability for Monash<br />

students to elect a student representative as a member of Council was only<br />

recently reinstated following legislation in 2015 from the Andrews’ Labor<br />

government, reversing the Baillieu government’s 2013 legislation which<br />

dropped requirements for elected staff and student representatives on<br />

Council. An appointed student representative, chosen by the University,<br />

remained on Council for the duration of these four years. The student who<br />

sits on Council, either appointed or elected, is awarded tens of thousands of<br />

dollars per year.<br />

Mr Ziyang (Tony) Zhang, previously President of MONSU Caulfield 2016,<br />

was elected to University Council to serve as the Student Member for <strong>2017</strong><br />

and 2018. As a part of a ticket called ‘Stand Up,’ which is now affiliated<br />

with ‘Unite,’ he and others on his ticket led with a focus around the impact<br />

of university life on international students. Controversy surrounded Mr.<br />

Zhang last year, as he was alleged to have spent $908 of student funds on a<br />

banquet for him and other Stand Up members; money that could have been<br />

directed towards running activities and services for students. This decision<br />

was brought to students’ attention by a post on Stalkerspace, revealing the<br />

receipt of the indulgent meal, and was received with widespread outrage<br />

and concern. Further, it is alleged that under his presidency, attendance<br />

numbers at MONSU events dropped dramatically, and funding was cut from<br />

the Queer department.<br />

According to the electronic poll, only 9.77% of the 70,676 eligible students<br />

voted in the University Council election, and only 2,498 formal votes were<br />

cast for the three positions on Academic Board. 10% of all eligible students<br />

had their say, but what about the remaining 90%? How many people saw<br />

the emails regarding the election in their inbox and just scrolled past<br />

them or ignored them? Brexit, the US election; our own University Council<br />

election. What they all have in common is that voting was optional, and<br />

when people don’t participate, it can have a major impact on the percentage<br />

of the population that is then represented. What to take away from the<br />

result of this election is not that a student about whom a number of serious<br />

allegations have been made now holds an extremely influential position,<br />

but that refusing to participate in elections can mean that you miss your<br />

opportunity to express your views and interests, and that they are never<br />

represented.<br />


edition one<br />

lot’s wife<br />

Clubs &<br />

Societies<br />

Monash Association of Debaters:<br />

The Monash Association of Debaters is one of<br />

the world's best university debating societies.<br />

Whether you have debated at a state level in high<br />

school, or you have never debated before, MAD has<br />

the experience and programs to help you improve<br />

your debating. Debating allows you to build skills<br />

that will be useful throughout your life, such as<br />

01.<br />

public speaking, critical thinking and an ability<br />

to structure arguments in a logical and cohesive<br />

way. A combination of these skills are useful in<br />

just about any career you may have in the future.<br />

As well as building skills, debating is also a lot of<br />

fun and a great chance to make new friends. The<br />

club sends contingents to tournaments all around<br />

Australia and the world, which will allow you to<br />

experience other cities and bond with your new<br />

friends. So come along on a Monday night and try<br />

out debating for yourself!<br />

Oxfam at Monash:<br />

Welcome to Oxfam at Monash! We are an<br />

organisation of students affiliated with Monash<br />

Clubs and Societies, Oxfam Australia and Oxfam-<br />

Monash Research Partnership. Oxfam at Monash<br />

hopes to inform and inspire students to campaign<br />

for social justice and sustainable development in<br />

local, national and international communities.<br />

02.<br />

Oxfam at Monash organises engaging events,<br />

which in the past have included the Hunger<br />

Banquet, Change Conference and other events<br />

in conjunction with other Monash Clubs and<br />

Societies and other like-minded organisations.<br />

Oxfam at Monash also organises opportunities in<br />

conjunction with social enterprises for students to<br />

volunteer during the semester. Oxfam at Monash<br />

hopes to mobilise the power of the people to<br />

campaign for a world without poverty. Oxfam at<br />

Monash updates students on opportunities to<br />

volunteer, intern and work with Oxfam Australia,<br />

Oxfam International and Oxfam-Monash Research<br />

Partnership. We look forward to helping you to ‘be<br />

the change you want to see in the world!’<br />

Female Engineers of Monash:<br />

FEM’s goal is to support female engineering<br />

students by inspiring and connecting them with<br />

each other and with females working in the<br />

profession and in the faculty. Although our focus is<br />

on female students, we welcome everyone to come<br />

and enjoy our social and academic events. Through<br />

our industry events and our annual Industry Guide,<br />

03.<br />

we encourage you to get to know representatives<br />

from the industry as well as provide you with easy<br />

access to relevant information that can help you<br />

make the most out of your university experience.<br />

FEM also has great opportunities for members to<br />

socialise at our famous pancake barbeques and<br />

our Trivia Night. Our aim is to bring more fun,<br />

engaging and helpful gatherings to our members<br />

this year. We look forward to perhaps seeing you at<br />

some of our exciting events this year!<br />

Monash Philosophy Society:<br />

Is it morally just for some of us to live in relative<br />

luxury while others merely subsist in abysmal<br />

poverty? Is it morally permissible, or perhaps<br />

even obligatory, to take drugs which improve<br />

our proclivities towards moral behaviour? Why<br />

is it that so many people find arguments for<br />

vegetarianism persuasive, yet very few actually<br />

04.<br />

follow through and become vegetarian? And: what<br />

even IS philosophy?! At the Monash Philosophy<br />

Society, we aim to undertake an intellectual<br />

exploration of these issues which are so often<br />

pertinent to our daily lives. We do so by inviting<br />

guest speakers from the Monash Philosophy<br />

Department to present on an area of their research<br />

and open up a discussion. Students who come<br />

along can expect exposure to hotly contested issues<br />

in philosophy, robust discussion and a friendly,<br />

welcoming environment. The questions above are<br />

just a sample of what we’ve discussed in the past;<br />

expect more exciting discussion in the future! No<br />

prior philosophical experience needed; just bring<br />

along an inquisitive mind.

Monash Hellenic Student Society:<br />

MHSS was established in 2006 and since then<br />

has been bringing the best of Greece to Monash!<br />

We host a wide variety of cultural and social events<br />

throughout the year, including our famous souvlaki<br />

days, soccer tournaments, unrivalled tavern nights,<br />

O-Week stalls, participation in cultural community<br />

events and much more! Our events are guaranteed<br />

05.<br />

to bring passion, kefi and glendi (as the Greeks<br />

say!). We have the best of time doing everything<br />

that is necessary to operate a successful club and<br />

have cherished memories as proof!<br />

Wired:<br />

Wired is the official society for the Faculty of<br />

Information Technology at Monash. If you're<br />

passionate about computers, the IT industry, or just<br />

want to hang out with other tech-minded people,<br />

Wired is the club to be in. During the semesters<br />

we run lots of different events ranging from our<br />

Industry Night in March, to UniHack and our<br />

06.<br />

Trivia Night in August and September. We aim to<br />

offer a variety of different activities and events for<br />

our club members ranging from fun and informal<br />

lunches like our first week BBQ, to workshops with<br />

our industry partners like Facebook and Deloitte.<br />

Either way when you join Wired, you’re guaranteed<br />

an awesome year at Monash. The best part is that<br />

it’s free for MSA members and only $5 for nonmembers.<br />

So come and say hi to us at our booth in<br />

O-Week, we’ve got a few goodies to give away and<br />

always have new tech to show off.<br />

Engineers Without Borders Monash:<br />

“Science or engineering related fields never<br />

really interested me. However, I was lucky enough<br />

to have attended a science program over the<br />

summer holidays in 2014. Many among the cohort<br />

were extremely passionate about STEM and had<br />

amazing hobbies such as coding or building models<br />

of planes and cars. Others, like me, were simply<br />

07.<br />

curious about what The Conocophillips Science<br />

Experience had to offer. It was there where I first<br />

realised I had found my people and my calling, as<br />

well as my first experience with Engineers Without<br />

Borders. Fast forward two years, I’m volunteering<br />

for EWB and absolutely loving the fact that we are<br />

able to inspire students and bring to their attention<br />

how cool STEM can be. One thing I noticed<br />

during my time as a high-school student was that<br />

engineering had almost no representation in the<br />

majority of schools. I had no idea what engineering<br />

was – maybe just people in hard hats who worked<br />

on bridges and cars? So having this opportunity<br />

to participate in STEM outreach and conduct fun<br />

workshops which students of all ages can take<br />

something away from amazes me. Sure, they might<br />

decide that ‘engineering is not for me’. However,<br />

it’s those few students whose eyes light up when<br />

you show them a cool coding trick, or talk to them<br />

about your studies and projects – it’s those few kids<br />

who you can see start thinking ‘hey, maybe this<br />

could be something I’m interested in…’ that really<br />

make volunteering worthwhile.” - Helen Zhou<br />

Monash Photography Club:<br />

Have you ever wanted to capture a photo but felt<br />

like too much of a tourist or felt guilty for slowing<br />

people down? Join this club and be embarrassed<br />

no more. We are a diverse group of people who<br />

are passionate about photography and believe it<br />

is worth any effort or stare to capture that perfect<br />

shot. Throughout the year we hold workshops,<br />

08.<br />

daytrips and road trips that allow you to learn<br />

camera and editing skills, and travel with equally<br />

passionate people. The club is beginner friendly so<br />

there’s no need to be a professional or even own an<br />

advanced camera (a phone camera will do!). Photos<br />

have become an important aspect of expression<br />

and marketing in this age of social media, therefore<br />

photography is a super beneficial skill to acquire<br />

and great fun to take up as a hobby.<br />

Progressive Law Network:<br />

The PLN stands for increasing awareness about<br />

social justice issues and providing the opportunity<br />

for passionate students to effect positive social<br />

change. Last year, we launched a careers guide and<br />

hosted many public lectures on interesting topics<br />

such as animal rights issues, domestic violence and<br />

international law. This year, we have introduced<br />

09.<br />

a portfolio for mental health and are planning on<br />

creating more policy reform opportunities. Our<br />

welcoming and passionate committee members<br />

will be organising many social activities for this<br />

year which will be intermixed with our meaningful<br />

lectures and debates. We hope to see you at our<br />

upcoming meetings!<br />

Monash Muggles:<br />

If you’re still waiting for your Hogwarts letter<br />

to arrive, wishing that Hagrid will bust down your<br />

door to tell you “YER A WIZARD”, and craving that<br />

little bit of magic on campus, then Muggles is the<br />

club for you! From events like our annual Triwizard<br />

Yule Ball (co-hosted with Melbourne University<br />

and La Trobe) and trivia, to movie nights, game<br />

10.<br />

nights, and Quidditch, the Monash Muggles is<br />

the perfect club for anyone who has just seen the<br />

films to the most dedicated Harry Potter fan. For<br />

any inquiries send us an owl at monashmuggles@<br />

monashclubs.org or visit us in O-Week.<br />

Monash Law Student’s Society:<br />

The Monash Law Students’ Society has been<br />

operating to serve law students since 1964 and is<br />

one of the largest student societies at Clayton. We<br />

have 7 different portfolios that offer a wide range of<br />

experiences to students including: Administration,<br />

Activities, Careers, Competitions, Education,<br />

Social Justice & Equity, and finally, the Juris Doctor<br />

11.<br />

portfolio for our postgraduate students. Whatever<br />

your interests, the LSS has something for you<br />

to enjoy! Whether it be Law Ball, Networking<br />

Evenings, Social Justice Seminars or just a burger<br />

at one of our BBQs, make sure you get involved in<br />

our events in <strong>2017</strong>, and like our Facebook page for<br />

updates.<br />

student affairs<br />


A Medley Of Evil<br />

edition one<br />

In 1970, a large number of recreational books and records were bequeathed to the University<br />

of Melbourne in the name of John Medley. As the University of Melbourne had already established<br />

a recreational library, the resources were hence donated to Monash and the John Medley Library was<br />

established as the first library of our student union. Managed by the Monash Student Association, the<br />

library is run off the work of a few staff members who are either students or past students, and a team of<br />

dedicated student volunteers. Grace Trist, the library coordinator, mentioned that the original purpose<br />

of the library in 1970 is still very relevant today. She acknowledged that a lot of the feedback she gets<br />

from students now is similar to back when the library was first established. It is a “refuge for students,<br />

away from the chaos of academic life.”<br />

Over the past few years, there has been debate over the names of particular buildings at the University<br />

of Melbourne. The Richard Berry Building has recently had its name changed to the Peter Hall Building<br />

late last year. This was due to the fact that Berry, a strong proponent of eugenics, had collected some 400<br />

Aboriginal corpses. The remains were re-discovered on the campus in 2003, arguably making the name<br />

change several years overdue. There has been a similar push for other buildings at Melbourne University<br />

carrying the names of detestable individuals to also be changed. One relevant example to Monash as well<br />

as Melbourne University is John Medley. Both staff and students at Monash and Melbourne University<br />

have expressed their concern over the name of buildings carrying his name.<br />

John Medley has a particularly shameful history involving the unethical use of eugenics, specifically<br />

aimed at Aboriginal people amongst many others. Furthermore, Medley was a member of the Eugenics<br />

Society of Victoria. The society was known for advocating for the use of sterilisation, segregation, and<br />

lethal chambers against Aboriginal people, homosexuals, people with disabilities and other groups of<br />

people that were deemed ‘inferior’ by members of the society. The practice of eugenics informed much<br />

of the belief system of Nazism. Following in a similar mould to the research developed in the United<br />

States, particularly California, eugenics gained prominence in Germany prior to the Nazis gaining power.<br />

However, once Hitler consolidated power there was a much larger emphasis placed on the expansion of<br />

its research. This expansion ultimately led to the removal of people who were generally considered weak<br />

in the chain of heredity: including people with cognitive and physical disabilities, mental illness and<br />

homosexuals. The idea was that the removal of ‘rotten heredity’ would result in a genetically superior<br />

master race. The Holocaust was a consequence of this belief system.<br />

For a university campus to still have buildings named in commemoration of people whose actions<br />

aided the oppression of marginalised groups, suggests that the honoree should still be celebrated.<br />

Eugenics and the racist practices of the members of the Eugenics Society of Victoria are nothing to be<br />

celebrated. Instead, we should be celebrating Indigenous achievement. The struggle that Indigenous<br />

Australians have faced in trying to gain access to education and equal opportunities is still ongoing.<br />

With this in mind, the <strong>2017</strong> MSA Indigenous Department is in the process of renaming the building after<br />

a prominent Indigenous Monash graduate. By doing so, we would not only have a library named after a<br />

person relevant to our university, but it could play an additional role in reversing the image impacted by<br />

John Medley. This will enforce the notion that we should honour Indigenous Australians, rather than a<br />

person who denigrated them. If the plan to rename is successful, the student union library would better<br />

reflect the values here at Monash University.<br />

The Dark History of our<br />

Student Union Library<br />

lot’s wife<br />

article by jayden crozier and bryda nichols

Thoughts On Living Abroad<br />

Away from home, often for months at a time. The<br />

longer one dwells on it, more daunting the prospect. The<br />

leap of faith just has to be taken, a step forward into an<br />

uncertain darkness of the future.<br />

Studying abroad means being away from family<br />

and the safe shelter of the nest, for both international<br />

students and citizens going interstate. At home, your<br />

father might have taken on the irksome job of managing<br />

administrative letters and monetary matters, your<br />

mother might have tended to the shopping and cooking,<br />

your siblings might have organized weekend picnics<br />

and family outings – it doesn’t matter, now that you are<br />

on your own. No longer is there the familiar security<br />

of family to soften life’s bruises with their reliable<br />

company, shared resources (notably financial) and<br />

heartfelt sympathy. This security is quite rare, although<br />

not impossible to find among friends. You can never<br />

be so recklessly certain of a friend’s affection especially<br />

after a heated argument or in an environment of mutual<br />

competition for grades, internships or jobs.<br />

Thus, this necessitates some time and energy, both<br />

physical and emotional, to be devoted to building a<br />

support network – a family away from home. In addition,<br />

the responsibility of taking care of yourself falls to…well,<br />

you. While we have had some training in taking care<br />

of ourselves, its implications are felt even more keenly<br />

when living abroad by oneself.<br />

Bank account statements? Insurance? Meals? Not<br />

the occasional meal out with friends but every single<br />

breakfast, lunch and dinner. It is hard to see anyone else<br />

around whom you can (perhaps after a particularly trying<br />

or disappointing day at university) delegate/plead/<br />

beg into doing them for you. Moreover, you have to<br />

consider the fact that you want friends around instead of<br />

frightening everyone away with your neediness. You need<br />

to settle things like the grown-up that you are.<br />

Yet this heavy burden of responsibilities on your<br />

lonesome shoulders also brings with it fresh breaths<br />

of freedom. Living away from family also means no<br />

one is waiting for you to be back at dinner time, to<br />

interrogate you about your day or ask for an account of<br />

your schedule. You can change your mind, at any time,<br />

without worrying about clashing family commitments.<br />

The heady carefree feeling of a chilly night out with all<br />

novelty of unearthly morning hours is yours to savour.<br />

Daylight hours are yours to plan and spend as you wish<br />

– a day out in the city or by the sea? Catching up on<br />

homework or sleep? Shopping sprees or long chats with<br />

a friend? You need to be accountable only to yourself.<br />

The inevitable hours of solitude when you find yourself<br />

alone after a friend bails on you can also be a blessing in<br />

disguise – without the incessant voices at home, however<br />

well-intentioned, you can finally hear your true inner<br />

voice (and be sure of it) and have the time to follow<br />

where your inner motivations lead while discovering<br />

different aspects of your personality.<br />

For me, returning home for the summer holidays was akin to<br />

chancing upon a forgotten, old novel. It was the same narrative –<br />

familiar personalities of family, same jokes and quarrels, almost<br />

similar landscape of roads and buildings of the city, but a different<br />

reader. One will start to draw parallels – the public transport,<br />

architecture, food, living with friends versus family. Upon returning<br />

home, the initial friction of re-adjustment – living in close quarters<br />

with people whom you are accountable to and who place certain<br />

unspoken and oftentimes unwelcome expectations on you – might<br />

come unexpected. It is almost like being caged again but the<br />

boundaries more keenly felt after one has known flight. The weary<br />

obligation of blood ties is nevertheless accompanied by the reward<br />

of domestic bliss and greater emotional security (and maybe, the<br />

hopes in anticipation of the upcoming university semester).<br />

So how can one best prepare for this flight of freedom?<br />

1. Find out as much as possible, but not to the point of<br />

information overload.<br />

2. Be willing to make friends, by being a friend to others.<br />

3. Start learning to clean (a little) and cook (a lot).<br />

More importantly, know that it is alright to be confused or<br />

homesick. It is acceptable to have days when you want to lie in bed<br />

and hide from the world. Everyone has their own narrative, their<br />

own story to tell. However in the end, you will need to get out there<br />

to live, experience and create your own narrative.<br />

As a Singaporean coming to Australia, I take particular joy in<br />

noting differences between the two countries. One key point of<br />

comparison is the supermarket – everyone has to buy their own<br />

groceries Down Under. Australia is proud of her produce – her dairy<br />

bears the stamp of a home-grown company. The luscious fruits in<br />

season – peaches and grapes in summer, kiwi and navel oranges in<br />

winter – are fresh from her land. Singapore however does not have<br />

the luxury of acres of fertile land or indeed, much land at all – most<br />

fruits and dairy are imported.<br />

Cashiers in Australia smilingly greet you with “How are you?” at<br />

the checkout, even if it might be out of routine rather than genuine<br />

concern. On the contrary, those in Singapore single-mindedly focus<br />

on scanning barcodes as efficiently as they can. That is possibly the<br />

reason shoppers in Australia tend to be generously happy and polite<br />

– the custom is to carefully empty the contents of one’s basket or<br />

trolley onto the conveyor belt thereby giving the cashier a helping<br />

hand. In comparison, shoppers in Singapore are usually more<br />

time-pressed, worried about adding up dollars and cents of their<br />

purchases and placing the entire shopping basket for the cashier to<br />

empty, as if fearful that the little happiness they have will be lost if<br />

they squander it on a smile for a stranger.<br />

article by dolly png<br />

student affairs<br />


Unions Are Important: Analysing NUS<br />

edition one<br />

lot’s wife<br />

The National Union of Students is the peak<br />

representative body for undergraduate students<br />

who are studying in an Australian university. Its<br />

basic aims are to safeguard and progress the interests<br />

of students. NUS was established in 1987, having<br />

descended from the now-defunct Australian Union<br />

of Students (AUS). NUS, via its website, asserts that<br />

it seeks to achieve its noble aims by ‘by working with<br />

campus-based student organisations, running actions<br />

and campaigns, and making sure the voices of students<br />

are heard by parliamentarians.’<br />

The need for a national union that protects students<br />

is pronounced in the current political and economic<br />

environment. Universities are no longer public<br />

institutions, but businesses that are run according<br />

to the profit motive. In many cases this results in<br />

universities around Australia subordinating the<br />

tangible interests of students to the demand of profit<br />

and capital. This is evident in the frequent course<br />

restructurings taking place across Australia (the<br />

University of Melbourne example being the most<br />

infamous) and the reduction of funding for lecturers,<br />

tutors and mental health services. Students are also not<br />

immune from Federal government action, who only<br />

recently attempted to introduce 100k degrees.<br />

Annually, NUS holds a National Conference in<br />

Victoria. Delegates are elected from around Australia<br />

to vote on, and thereby determine the policy of the<br />

union for the upcoming year. Some of the matters<br />

voted on at the 2016 National Conference related to<br />

opposing government cuts to welfare and universities,<br />

as well as advocating for the introduction of sensible<br />

drug policies. Many students also come to witness the<br />

proceedings and debate policy about which they are<br />

passionate.<br />

The main factions are: Socialist Alternative,<br />

Grassroots, National Labor Students, the Independents,<br />

Student Unity and The Australian Liberal Students’<br />

Federation. There are also independents who vote<br />

individually.<br />

Certainly, conference floor is fertile ground for debate.<br />

Each faction has a particular perspective on the issues of<br />

the day, and they are accordingly entitled to share this<br />

with the supporters of the union. Thorough discussion<br />

of these issues allows for each attendee to assume an<br />

informed, considered personal position. For the most<br />

part, this is a politically stimulating thing.<br />

That isn’t to say that National Conference functions<br />

perfectly. Sometimes speaker’s arguments can descend<br />

into ad hominem statements, and factional hostilities<br />

can get in the way of productive debates. For example,<br />

there were a number of times where speaker’s were<br />

shouted down from other factions, thereby stultifying<br />

legitimate discussion. Moments such as these are<br />

contrary to the objectives of a representative student<br />

union.<br />

However, it would be wrong to assume that this is a<br />

defining characteristic of the union. Indeed, there were<br />

times where other factions congratulated one another<br />

on creating good policy. One of the more memorable<br />

instances of cooperation came after lunch on the third<br />

day of the Conference. Students in attendance divided<br />

themselves into states, ready to discuss their plans for<br />

the National Day of Action (NDA) in March. There were<br />

many worthy contributions on how to ensure that the<br />

day would be a success, and the spirit of collaboration<br />

was palpable. It is with great anticipation that we wait<br />

for the NDA, the aim of which is to promote discussion<br />

about making university education free again.<br />

NUS is a vital student body that was conceived to<br />

protect the interests of now under-siege students. It<br />

would be erroneous to expect that the members of<br />

the union be in complete consensus on every issue.<br />

But, a united and harmonious union is bound to be<br />

most successful in pursuing the maintenance and<br />

advancement of student rights.<br />

article by nick bugeja<br />

artwork by isabella toppi

Make Education Free Again<br />

For their biggest campaign of <strong>2017</strong>, the peak<br />

representative body of student unions around<br />

Australia, the National Union of Students (NUS),<br />

have started a campaign called Make Education Free<br />

Again. The campaign will defend the rights of students<br />

to accessible education and welfare, fight against the<br />

tertiary fee, and demand an end to the enormous debt<br />

students are saddled with.<br />

Once upon a sweet time, tertiary education in Australia<br />

was completely free (say whaaat). This lasted until 1987<br />

– but it means the very people who are forcing us to<br />

pay higher fees and scrape by on poorly funded welfare<br />

went to university without paying a cent. Since entering<br />

politics, these people have pushed heavily to deregulate<br />

university fees. The average annual student contribution<br />

rose to $1,800 in 1989, then to $5,183 in 1997, and further<br />

to $7,600 in 2014. At the moment, universities can<br />

only legally increase fees by a very minor percentage.<br />

Deregulation means that Vice Chancellors at Australian<br />

universities can make degrees as expensive as they like.<br />

This cruelly takes advantage of the limited options many<br />

students have in regards to their university course, and<br />

a working class that increasingly relies on a tertiary<br />

qualification simply to live within ones own means.<br />

While deregulation was first introduced as an idea<br />

in 2014, it came after a long history of our government<br />

slowly dismantling public funding to education. Recent<br />

years have shown scholarship cuts, major cuts to student<br />

welfare, and a fee structure that makes university<br />

increasingly difficult to access. It is no wonder research<br />

shows that approximately two thirds of university<br />

students live below the poverty line. Financial stress is<br />

not only a huge deterrent from academic success, but<br />

it disproportionately affects Indigenous students and<br />

students from low-socio economic backgrounds. This<br />

issue is simply becoming more devastating for students<br />

and families by the day. A tertiary qualification is almost<br />

the requisite standard for a job that pays a living wage in<br />

Australia. Living in such a world begs the question: why<br />

is the cost of a qualification so financially crippling?<br />

While much of the deregulation bill was blocked by<br />

Parliament, the idea still remains on the table as some<br />

university courses are already being deregulated without<br />

much public scrutiny. In 2014, when we were on the brink<br />

of a complete fee restructure that would be absolutely<br />

devastating for students across the board, NUS along<br />

with many other groups of students, launched into<br />

action by protesting in the streets. NUS President at the<br />

time Rose Steele arranged meetings that successfully<br />

convinced a number of Independent senators to<br />

vote down the bill. Fee deregulation was turned into<br />

a poisonous issue and was defeated in the Senate<br />

three times. While smaller, lesser-known attacks on<br />

education have come into place then, the success student<br />

activists had with beating the main fee deregulation<br />

bill emphasises the importance of student unionism,<br />

political engagement and the effectiveness of taking<br />

action.<br />

The Australian Government consistently implements<br />

cuts to education every year, often far from public<br />

scrutiny. Being deliberately subtle, they take advantage<br />

of an increasingly disengaged and clueless middle class.<br />

This means that there’s seemingly no reason to protest<br />

anything – and IT’S A TRAP. Fighting back to this in the<br />

form of protesting and activism not only pressures the<br />

government, but it spreads the message far and wide that<br />

the current government does not stand for us: not for<br />

workers, not for families, and certainly not for students.<br />

The Australian Government is also cracking into<br />

welfare. Recently, in what has been mostly labelled as a<br />

‘scam’, thousands of dollars of false debt have been added<br />

onto Centrelink recipients. Debt notices calculated on<br />

faulty algorithms have changed the lives of thousands<br />

of people already, forcing them into the stressful task of<br />

scrambling through old payslips to prove they don’t owe<br />

money. It has been alleged that approximately 20% of the<br />

debt notices are inaccurate. There are reports of people<br />

paying debts they don’t owe, just to stop the government<br />

hounding them. This illustrates the government’s tactful<br />

approach to welfare: make it measly, hard to access, and<br />

push as many people off as possible.<br />

In 1974, Gough Whitlam abolished university fees<br />

with the belief that “a student’s merit, rather than a<br />

parent’s wealth, should decide who should benefit from<br />

the community’s vast financial commitment to tertiary<br />

education” (from his 1972 pre-election speech). These<br />

sentiments still ring true, and that’s why instead of just<br />

reacting, we are pushing for positive change.<br />

The National Day of Action is an annual protest<br />

organised by NUS that happens on the same day, at<br />

the same time, in all major cites around the country.<br />

This is what helped students in their major win against<br />

fee regulation in 2014, and <strong>2017</strong>’s objective is the Make<br />

Education Free Again campaign. When thousands hit the<br />

streets of cities around the country to fight for our right<br />

to affordable and accessible education, we are heard. It<br />

is absolutely vital that big numbers of students inform<br />

themselves of the completely unacceptable education<br />

inequity that this government is getting away with, and<br />

get involved with NUS campaigns.<br />

The protest to Make Education Free Again will kick off<br />

with a bang on March 22nd at 2pm, at the State Library.<br />

There will be a barbeque held on the Lemon Scented<br />

Lawn at 12pm and a contingent from Monash will be<br />

leaving together at 1pm. All are welcome to join – and<br />

even if it’s your first protest, you will be apart of a large<br />

and friendly group who are keen to answer any questions.<br />

To join student activists around the country in fighting<br />

for this right for accessible and affordable education,<br />

contact your student union about how you can get<br />

involved with NUS campaigns and events. At a more<br />

local level, the Education (Public Affairs) Officers or the<br />

Environment and Social Justice Officers at the Monash<br />

Student Association (MSA), located upstairs in the<br />

Campus Centre, are always willing to speak to students<br />

who want to know more about their campaigns or how<br />

they can get more involved.<br />

article by juliet steel and jasmine duff, illustration by audrey chmielewski<br />

student affairs<br />


MONASH<br />



Whether you’re a student, staff member or visitor to<br />

Monash, you’ll find our security services team working<br />

around the clock to keep our campuses safe and<br />

enjoyable places to work, study and play.<br />

If you’re ever worried about your own or someone else’s<br />

safety, see something suspicious or just want some<br />

security advice, help is just a phone call away. You call<br />

the same general security number on all our Australian<br />

campuses. You’ll find the numbers on our website, it’s a<br />

good idea to note or enter them in your mobile phone.<br />

You can visit or call your campus security team directly, so<br />

make a note of your campus security office location and<br />

contact details which is also on our website.<br />

You’re in safe hands at Monash, so enjoy your time<br />

with us.<br />


24/7<br />

Campus<br />

Security<br />

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Emergency<br />

Help<br />

Points<br />

monash.edu/security<br />

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333*<br />

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ol<br />

Room<br />

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For your chance to WIN!<br />

Visit the security website and watch the<br />

security orientation video:<br />

monash.edu/security<br />

Or scan the QR code and follow the prompts<br />

Security<br />

Advice<br />

Turn over for your<br />

chance to WIN!<br />

Property<br />

Marking<br />

Security<br />

Orientation<br />

Video<br />

T: 9905 3333 IN AN EMERGENCY<br />

Security contacts:<br />

T: 9902 7777 for non urgent matters<br />

T: 9905 3333 IN AN EMERGENCY<br />

“ If you leave it, you could lose it ”

contributers:<br />

sam allen<br />

nick jarrett<br />

hugh brooks<br />

devika pandit<br />

joanne fong<br />

caitlyn harris<br />

diana batchelor<br />

kelly simpson-bull<br />

emina besirevic<br />

vanessa le<br />

Politics/Society<br />

politics/society<br />


Trump: A Nation Divided<br />

article by nick jarrett<br />

illustration by hugh brooks<br />

edition one<br />

lot’s wife<br />

Whether republican or democrat, libertarian or green, the Presidential Inauguration typically marks<br />

a new era and the steady progression of a global superpower. With the divisive inauguration of Donald<br />

Trump, the air surrounding the American people can only be described as tense and anxious. President Trump’s<br />

first few days has sparked mass protest, anger and debate unlike any other seen within the opening fortnight<br />

of a presidency. Trump’s executive orders have increased moral confusion and chaos; they have relieved women<br />

of bodily autonomy, isolated religious minorities and immigrants and increased xenophobia and racism to<br />

unprecedented levels. However, there still remains Trump’s faithful base; supporters who refuse to see the moral<br />

wrong in his actions and wish to see further moves to continue this ultra-conservative pattern of governance.<br />

Simply put, Trump is literally dividing the country as he strives towards implementing his policies.<br />

Trump seems driven to undo all of the work completed by the Obama administration, as within a few days he<br />

overruled laws on abortion, shut down sites associated with environmental sustainability and signalled his intent<br />

to repeal Obamacare. In doing so, he is continuing the election cycle divide. A new presidency is supposed to unify<br />

the nation, and yet these moves seem to exhibit that Trump has no desire to compromise with the people who<br />

voted Hillary, but instead undo all of the work which they wanted to see expanded.<br />

No greater example of this tension can be seen than that of the state of California. Prior to the inauguration,<br />

the popularity of secession was at 20%. After two weeks, it has risen to 34%. The state is petitioning for signatures<br />

allowing for a state-wide vote on the secession in 2018, a move which is almost certain to succeed. California, which<br />

has both a larger population and a stronger economy than Australia, has literally been so divided from the United<br />

States, there is a legitimate move to separate from their country. Given that under Trump they will be paying more<br />

federal taxes than they receive in federal benefits, that they have a large multi-cultural population and that they<br />

have increasing doubts over Trump’s ability to govern effectively, the reasons for separation is evident.<br />

People from all corners of the country are standing up in opposition to Trump, particularly in the wake of his<br />

immigration ban. The Screen Actors Guild Awards (SAGs) highlighted numerous celebrities using their platform to<br />

lampoon Trump’s executive order, in a similar vein to the Golden Globes ceremony. However, despite the seeming<br />

obvious immorality and cruelty of some of the policies, Trump’s supporters have grown more ardent than ever.<br />

Agreeing with the hysterics of Sean Spicer’s first press conference as Press Secretary, there is a popular sentiment<br />

that Trump has been treated unfairly by the media, and that his policies are for the benefit of the ‘Real American.’<br />

In Southern states such as Arizona, Texas and New Mexico, radio stations are lauding Trump’s decisiveness even as<br />

the poverty-riddled cities of Mexico remain in sight just across the current fence-line. Nevermind that these people<br />

are a minority, they are vocal and persuasive.<br />

Refusing to focus on the racist immigration laws which they believe in but do not always vocalise; Trump’s<br />

followers focus on his ‘economic genius.’ Nevermind that he was voted into office to ‘drain the swamp’ and<br />

has since hired the Goldman-Sachs executives he condemned, or that more of his businesses have failed than<br />

succeeded, his commercial acumen is going to revitalise the country. Admittedly, Trump’s pressure on General<br />

Motors has led to their decision to invest $1billion into a new American factory – instead of the original Mexican<br />

alternative – and the subsequent 7,000 jobs that will result. However, his spectacular idea that America should<br />

tax all Mexican imports 20% to pay for ‘The Wall’ would also lead to major price inflations that would cause the<br />

poor of America – who Donald targeted in his campaign – to be priced out of ordinary goods. It is only a matter of<br />

time before even his most loyal supporters are either disenfranchised by his manoeuvres or left loyal through their<br />

support of his racist policies alone.<br />

What is escalating the divisiveness within the country, however, is the seeming lack of preparation that has<br />

characterised Trump’s administration thus far. The comparison between Barack Obama’s first agenda which<br />

consisted of over 25,000 words to Donald Trump’s 2,500-word equivalent was an initial sign that there may be<br />

disorganisation in the administration. Since then, not one of Trump’s executive orders has received legal counsel,<br />

let alone legal review, resulting in the federal courts having to question or attempt to overturn his policies.<br />

Similarly, Kelly-Anne Conway has drawn comparisons to George Orwell’s infamous 1984 dictatorship for her<br />

presentation of ‘alternative facts’, as has Sean Spicer with his consistent demand that Donald Trump had roughly<br />

one million more people attend his inauguration than independent bodies have estimated. The comparisons with<br />

1984 do not end there, however, with Trump’s administration censoring the National Parks Department’s twitter<br />

feed in order to delete their pro-environment posts. The administration has tried to subtly influence what their<br />

government bodies publish and yet has done so poorly that it is public knowledge. This near-comedic circle of<br />

idiocy has confirmed the majority of the population’s opinions that this man is unfit to govern the country, and<br />

yet he is their president for the next four years. That is another 200 weeks of protests, racially targeted laws and<br />

outdated ultra-conservatism.<br />

What I can safely say after six weeks within this melting pot of anger, fear and confusion is that America is a<br />

nation on the verge of mass violence, unlawfulness and human rights breaches. By no means is Australia perfect<br />

– our refugee solution is barbaric, and our marriage equality stance archaic – but thank God I won’t have to live in<br />

America the next four years.

Logged In<br />

developing among people in public. Similar to a robotic<br />

world, each individual is preoccupied with technology<br />

for his needs. We are gradually losing a spirit of human<br />

interaction, our most fundamental trait. Tech-industry<br />

veteran Linda Stone cautions against this trend geared<br />

towards fostering relationships with screens rather than<br />

people:<br />

article by devika pandit<br />

Technology has simplified our lives to a great extent. With a<br />

special focus on the Internet and social media, instant messaging,<br />

chat and regular… no, constant updates, these have made even the<br />

average Joe a walking encyclopedia. I however have mixed feelings<br />

about this development. I like reminiscing about a time when we<br />

weren’t so digitally busy maintaining virtual connections. In this<br />

article, I reminisce some more and draw attention to the ill effects<br />

of new technology.<br />

The Internet Boom with due credit to Google search has<br />

simplified matters since its inception. Today, one can be well<br />

informed about anything and everything right from the spelling of<br />

‘multilingualism’ to causes of liver cirrhosis. However, over-reliance<br />

is my main concern.<br />

For example, my friend Tanish used Google to find out how old<br />

he’d be in 2054. He could’ve calculated the answer himself but<br />

wanted to be sure, ‘just in case’. To my mind, this incident talks<br />

volumes about extreme dependence created by technological<br />

devices. Nicholas Carr, author of The Shallows: What the Internet Is<br />

Doing to Our Brains echoes similar sentiments remarking that search<br />

dependence can indeed worsen our self-reasoning abilities.<br />

Although the Internet is a popular source of information, this<br />

information possesses a high risk of being biased and may lead<br />

users to treat obtained information as inherently correct. Thus, if<br />

Search tells 19 year-old Tanish that he’d be 71 in 2054, it must be<br />

true because of ‘the-Internet-is-never-wrong’ ideology. Carr exposes<br />

such thinking as the future of societal reasoning, indeed a worrying<br />

proposition.<br />

Digitalization is a pertinent issue in this discussion. I wrote in<br />

longhand at school, whether for homework, assignments or finals.<br />

Laptops were for project work that was submitted as hard copies. At<br />

my first semester in university, I learnt the struggle of submitting<br />

all work in typed format. While I don’t have issues with typing, I do<br />

miss writing.<br />

We don’t write anymore, we type – a written assignment is a<br />

precious ‘document’ for the student and feared by examiners owing<br />

to legibility issues. It saddens me to think that we might perhaps<br />

not need pens or paper in the future, in our pursuit of a paperless<br />

world.<br />

Digital note-taking fares poorly when compared to longhand<br />

writing. As proven by researchers at Princeton University, typing<br />

is not learning but ‘procuring’ information. Writing allows one to<br />

sift through a stack of information and separate grain from chaff,<br />

a process that constitutes a major part of learning as suggested<br />

by the Princeton study. Unfortunately, the allure of technological<br />

convenience is stronger than a horde of scientific findings.<br />

My daily commute on public transport convinces me that as a<br />

society, we are engaged in proving how tech-savvy we are. Be it<br />

work, music, relationship problems, self-admiration or killing time,<br />

my fellow commuters invariably turn to the device as a solution.<br />

I watch committed office-goers furiously typing away beside a<br />

lady pretending to read on her phone when her expressions clearly<br />

indicate finding the perfect selfie for Snapchat. Tech-fever has not<br />

spared seniors either. On a quest to not seem outmoded, many flip<br />

through different apps and idle away the ride re-seeing old photos<br />

or marking grandchildren’s photos as favorites.<br />

While there isn’t anything particularly troublesome about the<br />

aforementioned activities, I sense a certain disconnectedness<br />

“It ultimately can feed the development of a kind of<br />

sociopathy and psychopathy.”<br />

Surprisingly, technology (read: social media) may not<br />

be as useful as we take it to be.<br />

For example, Summer Fest 2016 at Monash was mainly<br />

publicised through social media, even Moodle. Large<br />

posters greeted students as they entered the Menzies<br />

and onward towards Campus Centre. Despite this, in<br />

a Moodle Poll, a majority of students said they had<br />

never heard of Summer Fest. This is the case with many<br />

individuals today – we have much information available<br />

but barely know about it. These apparent gaps in our<br />

information systems might be linked to an information<br />

overload. Avivah Litan, an analyst at Gartner says:<br />

“The problem is humans can't keep up with all the<br />

technology they have created… It's becoming unmanageable<br />

by the human brain.”<br />

I perceive that we are more connected through social<br />

networks than ever before but looking closely, the quality<br />

of these networks is poor. We are friends with people,<br />

but may not talk to them if seen at a cinema. A Facebook<br />

group cannot offer the warmth of strong friendship<br />

experienced on coffee dates. Or, pertaining to matters of<br />

the heart, Tinder swiping is no match for cultivating real<br />

time relationships. Netflix (with or without the ‘chill’)<br />

is the current rage, with memes poking fun at our ironic<br />

tendency to intentionally seek a solitary lifestyle despite<br />

multiple opportunities for socializing. To put it simply,<br />

we are losing the social bit of our description as social<br />

animals.<br />

Moreover, there exists a very real problem of social<br />

media addiction with its effects hampering relationships,<br />

costing people their education, jobs and marriages.<br />

This explains the rise of technological detox and<br />

rehabilitation and even a National Day of Unplugging on<br />

the first Friday of March.<br />

A close friend Anam narrates her experience of<br />

a psychological counseling for FB addiction, which<br />

explains the intensity with which social media exerts<br />

control over our lives:<br />

“Most people thought I was weak due to my addiction. It is<br />

a crippling reality but there isn’t much awareness about it…<br />

I didn’t want to check my Facebook notifications but I felt<br />

anxious if I didn’t… Behavioral therapy taught me that the<br />

mind is a meek follower as well as a headstrong dictator-<br />

--for complying with as well as rebelling against one’s<br />

wishes.”<br />

Technology, as illustrated above, is a double-edged<br />

sword with the power to benefit or disadvantage,<br />

uplift or ruin, enlighten or misguide. We cannot stop<br />

technological evolution but can modify our use of this<br />

development. The choice is ours. It has always been ours.<br />

politics/society<br />


“If You’re Australian, Why Aren’t You White?”<br />

edition one<br />

lot’s wife<br />

It’s a question – or words to that affect – any Australian with a skin tone that glistens<br />

rather than burns in the sweltering Aussie heat is bound to get thrown in their direction.<br />

Just like Cady in Mean Girls, some will go mute not knowing how to respond. But this is<br />

not a rerun of Mean Girls – it’s real life. Comments that are ridiculously hilarious when<br />

directed at a white person may be an everyday reality for non-white Australians.<br />

In this sunny place, a dark and disturbing attitude haunts non-white Australians.<br />

Because of the colour of their skin, they’re deprived of the thing that white Australians<br />

have taken for granted for centuries – the privilege of being Australian.<br />

I’m an Australian citizen born to parents who arrived in Australia long before I was born.<br />

My father is a white Australian immigrant from England and my mother is Malaysian<br />

Indian. I often find myself defending my Australian identity by entertaining Mean Girlsesque<br />

questions because I have a skin pigment that does not fit the mould. My father<br />

doesn’t get called an immigrant. However, we both find it interesting how I’m often<br />

mistaken for being an immigrant, an illegal worker or a tourist.<br />

‘Australia’s Got Talent’ contestant, Sukhjit Kaur, laments in her powerful poetry slam<br />

performance, “rocking up for my first job at Coles was like a scene at Border Patrol. We<br />

don’t want no illegal workers here in Australia.” Her similar experience demonstrates that<br />

I am not alone. These ordeals appear to reinforce the message that people like me have not<br />

met the criteria required to be an Australian. We are not white.<br />

The First Australians were not white. They survived oppression, invasion and attempted<br />

genocide at the hands of white settlers. For many, Australia Day is a day off from work to<br />

enjoy lamb chops. For many indigenous Australians, it’s a reminder of the injustices they<br />

have and continue to suffer.<br />

Then there are the newer non-white Australians who pave the way for a more diverse and<br />

progressive image of Australia. They are the ones often left feeling strange in a familiar<br />


some thoughts on<br />

My classmate was born in Australia to parents who emigrated<br />

from Italy. One night he got told to ‘Go back to where he came<br />

from.’ Sadly, that statement is unsurprising. We’ve heard it before in<br />

the media, from our politicians and on the streets. The surprising<br />

part was that the people telling this Italian-Australian to “Go<br />

Home,” had thick British accents!<br />

It doesn’t matter how many decades you or your parents have<br />

lived in Australia. If you’re Asian, expect to be mistaken for being<br />

Chinese even though your grandparents came from Korea. If you’re<br />

brown, expect to be randomly selected for a search at the airport.<br />

If you’re black, expect people to clutch their purses close as you<br />

step onto the bus. Prejudice forces non-white Australians to live in<br />

between the lines in this place their parents told them to call home.<br />

We don’t need to look beyond our waters to Brexit and Trump for<br />

examples of xenophobia. As renowned political commentator John<br />

Oliver puts it, “Australia is the most comfortably racist country in<br />

the world.” There is a culture of hatred in this country that pushes<br />

non-white Australians out onto the fringes of society.<br />

The consequences of intolerance affect all Australians. Dr Anne<br />

Aly’s – an Australian professor and advisor to the White House<br />

– research demonstrates how discrimination against non-white<br />

Australians makes them significantly more susceptible to being<br />

radicalised. Racism breeds violence and hatred. This is a problem<br />

for a country that many have come to love for its safety and<br />

fairness.<br />

Racism flies in the face of our Australian belief in a fair go. A<br />

woman came into my work asking about vacancies. I told her I<br />

would pass her CV onto my manager and nosily skimmed it myself.<br />

It contained her photograph and details of her past. I noticed that<br />

she was born in Western Australia. My manager noticed the picture.<br />

“We don’t hire black people,” she mumbled under her breath as she<br />

crumpled up the CV and chucked it in the bin. As the dust of my<br />

shock settled, I wondered about all of the economic opportunities<br />

that go unattained in this country because of racism.<br />

Australians who hail from ethnically diverse backgrounds are<br />

vitally important to Australian culture too. There’s Thon Maker,<br />

Shaun Tan, Waleed Aly, Jessica Mauboy, Cathy Freeman and Penny<br />

Wong to name a few. Thon Maker is a professional basketball player<br />

who, despite being drafted by the NBA and offered a lucrative<br />

opportunity to play for Canada, still considers scoring asylum<br />

in Australia his greatest accomplishment. “As of right now, I am<br />

doing everything I can to play for Australia,” Thon reports. The<br />

accomplishments of non-white Australians should make people<br />

proud of this country.<br />

Australia boasts a national identity that challenges neat<br />

categories. This Australia Day, gulping down tandoori chicken,<br />

chow mein, tacos, falafel or tortellini with family and friends is just<br />

as Australian as cooking up a sausage sizzle on the barbie whilst<br />

cracking open a cold beer. The culinary benefits of this diversity are<br />

obvious but deeper still lies the hard truth. An incorrect and racist<br />

understanding of identity is toxic in a country that prides itself for<br />

rejecting entrenched class structures and giving everyone a fair go.<br />

Australians don’t all look the same. We’re ethnically diverse,<br />

complicated, progressive, free spirited, and we’re better for it.<br />

ethnic diversity<br />

article by diana batchelor, illustration by kelly simpson-bull<br />

politics/society 22-23

edition one<br />

lot’s wife

Yes, We... Tried<br />

As President Barack Obama gracefully departed<br />

the Oval Office for the last time, the words, ‘yes we<br />

can,’ continued to linger. They remain the symbol of<br />

his uncanny talent for drawing hope out of even the<br />

darkest firmament of America. And whilst the hope that<br />

was once so vigorously attached to his iconic campaign<br />

slogan seems hesitant under the Trump Administration,<br />

it continues to lull, albeit tentatively.<br />

Or, perhaps it wasn’t. Perhaps being remembered for<br />

what he represented, and not what he accomplished<br />

merely points to the fact that Obama was an admirable<br />

role model but an ineffective president. The tragedy<br />

of reaching for the stars but ultimately, due to the<br />

disappointing realities of governing, falling short,<br />

is most evident in his foreign policy. His embrace of<br />

the Bush Administration’s approach to the ‘War On<br />

Terror’ saw an unprecedented escalation of drone use<br />

with somber results. By February 2015, Obama’s covert<br />

drone strikes killed almost six times more people and<br />

twice as many civilians than those ordered under Bush.<br />

Reflecting on these statistics makes President Obama’s<br />

2009 Cairo address seem almost imagined. Following<br />

the devastation of the Iraq War, it is difficult to find<br />

another speech that captured the boundless optimism<br />

and possibility that Obama embodied. At the time, it<br />

was circulated that if a man with distant Muslim family<br />

ties who had spent his childhood years in Indonesia, a<br />

Muslim-majority country, couldn’t improve America’s<br />

relationship with the Muslim world, nobody could. And<br />

yet, the speech that once emanated hope that America’s<br />

relationship with the Arab world would improve, it<br />

now merely reflects the gap between what the Obama<br />

administration might have been and what it actually was.<br />

These once certain promises became the mood music<br />

for the failing relationship between the United States<br />

and the Middle East. The disastrous Libya intervention,<br />

the inefficient diplomatic interference in Yemen and<br />

the hasty request to remove Assad in Syria directly<br />

contradicted the ‘new beginning’ Obama once promised<br />

in Cairo. However, his failed foreign agenda also reflected<br />

the fact that the days in which the United States could<br />

create security and maintain world order are long gone.<br />

Obama had the opportunity to choose which places<br />

matter most and which can be left to run themselves,<br />

and largely, this choice was never made. Instead, his<br />

decisions only compounded the mistakes he inherited<br />

whilst in office.<br />

Domestically, the obstructionism Obama faced<br />

from Republicans and the Right was historically<br />

unprecedented. Indeed, one of his hardest battles<br />

fought was bringing about the health care law known as<br />

Obamacare. His goal, to help millions of Americans who<br />

couldn’t afford health insurance, emanated nobility and<br />

quickly overshadowed his other domestic endeavours. It<br />

was desperately needed, and despite its many flaws, was<br />

able to change the lives of countless Americans. However,<br />

whilst it seemed to be a huge step toward the Democratic<br />

dream of health care for all, creating the Affordable Care<br />

Act brought neither affordability nor workability. It<br />

turned out to be yet another dream that shattered and<br />

bore little resemblance to his soaring rhetoric.<br />

politics/society<br />

What he did do, quite well actually, was hasten state<br />

surveillance. But perhaps that’s the wrong way to<br />

describe it. Because you see, Obama publicly declared<br />

his opposition to the Patriot Act and Bush-era secrecy<br />

whilst building his career. And yet, it didn’t take long for<br />

him to quickly devastate progressive hopes by actually<br />

expanding the illegal wiretapping of American citizens<br />

that he was once so against. By 2012, XKeystone, a system<br />

used by the National Security Agency, was storing as much<br />

as forty-one billion records in thirty days. Meanwhile,<br />

whistleblowers and journalists were being prosecuted<br />

by the Obama Administration more robustly that any of<br />

his predecessors. Whilst justified under the untouchable<br />

umbrella of ‘national security,’ the ironic effect is that<br />

storing such volumes of data make the detection of<br />

security threats all the more difficult. Perhaps the<br />

most devastating result is that Donald Trump has now<br />

inherited such a powerful set of tools.<br />

However, Obama cannot be dismissed as merely a<br />

silver-tongued politician. The advancements made to the<br />

LGBT community during the Obama administration were<br />

striking. Indeed, marriage equality, the condemnation<br />

of discrimination in the military and the appointment<br />

of 11 openly gay federal judges were huge steps toward<br />

a progressive future. While discrimination still<br />

exists towards marginalized groups, Obama started a<br />

conversation about this marginalisation with confidence<br />

that was previously unforeseen in American politics.<br />

The 44th President also faced dire circumstances<br />

when taking office. The world economy was in the<br />

worst financial crisis since the Great Depression and<br />

the US was close to an economic meltdown. Yet, the<br />

Obama administration were able to lessen the blow<br />

of the Global Financial Crisis and see for America’s<br />

relatively slow economic recovery, eventually bringing<br />

the unemployment rate to below five per cent. Moreover,<br />

amongst the promises he was criticized for abandoning,<br />

one he did keep was not adding anymore detainees<br />

to Guantanamo Bay. Barred by both Republicans and<br />

Democrats in Congress from closing Guantanamo, Obama<br />

nonetheless chipped away at the population by making<br />

196 transfers to third-party countries. Indeed, the Obama<br />

administration recognised that the closer Trump came<br />

to placing his hand on the Lincoln Bible, the chances<br />

of helping those remaining were drastically slimming.<br />

As such, Obama worked tirelessly to get remaining<br />

detainees, many of which were held captive mistakenly,<br />

out of Guantanamo before he left office – even making<br />

four transfers in the 24 hours leading up to Trump’s<br />

inauguration.<br />

Whilst these achievements are honorable, they are<br />

few. The thought of what might have been if he had<br />

governed in a more tranquil era overpowers the progress<br />

that he did achieve. However, these missteps and missed<br />

opportunities do not take away from his ability to describe<br />

the nation’s pain with a delicacy, maturity and elegance<br />

that is unlike any other of his predecessors. They do<br />

not take away from his being an intelligent, eloquent,<br />

disciplined and wholly admirable man. And they most<br />

certainly do not take away from his ability to instill a<br />

genuine, and unparalleled hope into the hearts and minds<br />

of not just Americans, but all those willing to listen to the<br />

reassuring words, ‘yes we can.’<br />

A historical presidency<br />

and a complicated legacy<br />

article by emina besirevic, illustration by vanessa le<br />


Public Health: The Effect of Dating Apps on STI Rates Among University Students<br />

edition one<br />

It’s a typical Friday night. You’re browsing aimlessly<br />

through the selection that Tinder has to offer. Left. Right.<br />

Left. Left. Ew, definitely left. Right. Right – it’s a match!<br />

And so on. You scroll through your messages which range<br />

from the basic - hey baby/what’s up/I love ur eyes – to<br />

the more complex and witty (cheesy or otherwise) – you<br />

know what’s beautiful? Read the first word/Can I follow<br />

you? Cause my mum told me to follow my dreams.<br />

Some you reply to, some you don’t. And eventually<br />

you arrange to meet up with a handful. All these new<br />

relationships you have made, no matter how long or<br />

short they last all began by a simple swipe on your<br />

phone. But do you ever wonder that in swiping right to<br />

a potential hot hook-up, you’ve just swiped right to a<br />

potential STI? In an age where meeting new people and<br />

making connections is as easy as clicking “accept” on a<br />

friend request or swiping right on hot singles in your<br />

area, it is a given that dating and hooking up has been made so much<br />

easier and accessible. But with the rise in using dating apps such as<br />

Tinder, Happn, Bumble, Grindr, concern for an increase in the rates of<br />

STIs has risen too.<br />

Sex and the internet are both prone to risk and uncertainty, and<br />

thus the combinations of both in the use of mobile phone apps for<br />

sexual hook-ups or dating have been brought to the attention of<br />

sexual health researchers and promotors. One long-time sexual health<br />

campaigner, Dr Wendell Rosevear, has voiced his concern that people<br />

have jumped on internet dating and apps, to have frequent and often<br />

anonymous encounters, all more instant and accessible than before. Dr<br />

Rosevear expresses concern that this rise in sexual activity is directly<br />

correlated with the rise in STIs in his patients – some of which have<br />

sex with up to 10 people a day – and in the broader population of<br />

Australia. According to the 2015 Annual Surveillance Report of HIV<br />

viral hepatitis and STIs, there has been a rise in new diagnoses of STIs<br />

in Australia (including chlamydia, syphilis and gonorrhea) totaling<br />

122,258 new cases in 2014, the highest rates of infection found in<br />

groups aged 20-29. This was almost a rise in 10,000 new cases annually<br />

from 2012 (when Tinder was released).<br />

Of course, that’s not to say that using dating apps are a one way trip<br />

to gonorrhea city, but it is important to proceed with caution. As with<br />

any sexual partner, no matter if you found them through a mutual<br />

friend, dating app or off a street corner, communication is essential in<br />

order to eliminate any uncertainty or anything that could potentially<br />

affect your sexual health. No matter if you have one, three or an<br />

entire harem of sexual encounters and partners, make sure to always<br />

communicate with your partner. Ask about their sexual history, tell<br />

them about yours, no matter how awkward a conversation about STIs<br />

with a potential partner is, contracting an STI is far worse. And always<br />

remember to practice safe sex – use condoms, dental dams or any<br />

other form of barrier methods! Even if other contraceptives are used,<br />

only barriers such as condoms protect against STIs, and remember<br />

that some STIs can be contracted orally, not just through penetrative<br />

sex (sorry to sound like your sexual health teacher from the seventh<br />

grade).<br />

The take away from this article is not to scare you away and boycott<br />

all dating apps and technologies forever, they’re a fun, innovative and<br />

easy way to meet, chat to and screen through potential partners. Just<br />

be careful, have fun and continue swiping.<br />

lot’s wife<br />

article by joanne fong, illustration by caitlyn harris

contributers:<br />

sam allen<br />

jessica lehmann<br />

yusra shahid<br />

science & engineering subeditor team<br />

maria volobueva<br />

sasha hall<br />

julia thouas<br />

chulani jithma kaluarachchi<br />

Science/Engineering<br />

science/engineering<br />


edition one<br />

lot’s wife

Climate Change<br />

you<br />

can be the<br />

differenceclothing item<br />

Scientists have been telling us for<br />

years that climate change is real. Yet<br />

collectively we are doing very little to<br />

reduce the environmental degradation.<br />

Climate change is scary and life altering<br />

but we are the generation that can actually<br />

solve it.<br />

Let the facts speak for themselves. The<br />

world has already lost 80% of its forests.<br />

Half of the earth’s species have become<br />

extinct in the past forty years. In the history<br />

of humankind there has never been this<br />

much carbon in our atmosphere. We have<br />

already lost 27% of our coral reefs and at<br />

this rate all of the reefs will be gone in 30<br />

years. Over three quarters of energy utilised<br />

is from non-renewable fossil fuels sources.<br />

We have an island of plastics floating in our<br />

oceans the size of India, Europe, and Mexico<br />

combined. Reading these facts leaves you<br />

feeling numb; it is easier for us to check<br />

social media and watch a cute dog video<br />

than confront the reality of our looming<br />

climate disaster.<br />

How did we get here? Simply, climate<br />

change is a human-made disaster.<br />

Our direct abuse and disregard for the<br />

complicated and sensitive ecosystem we<br />

occupy has led to the near-environmental<br />

catastrophe. Right now we are existing<br />

in an ‘Anthropocene’, traced back to the<br />

early 1800’s. This is a new geological age<br />

characterised by humans pumping so much<br />

carbon dioxide in our atmosphere that<br />

we have extensively reshaped the planet’s<br />

environment.<br />

There are two fundamental science<br />

terms to grasp to understand climate<br />

science; the greenhouse effect and fossil<br />

fuels. The greenhouse effect occurs when<br />

sunlight passes through our atmosphere<br />

and shines down on Earth. When it hits the<br />

surface, it gets absorbed by the Earth and<br />

released as heat. Greenhouse gases in our<br />

atmosphere trap that heat, holding that<br />

warmth close to the surface that otherwise<br />

would have escaped into space. We need<br />

the greenhouse effect otherwise we would<br />

be as cold as ice, literally. These are a few of<br />

the main greenhouse gases; carbon dioxide<br />

(CO2), water vapor (H2O), methane (CH4)<br />

and ozone (O3). The earth has an internal<br />

thermostat that is now completely off kilter;<br />

most of the earth’s warming has occurred<br />

since the 1970s with 16 of the warmest<br />

years occurring since 2000. And the reason<br />

it is hotting up is due to fossil fuels; coal,<br />

oil, and natural gas that our modern lives<br />

require. However, when we burn fossil fuels<br />

it produces CO2, and more CO2 means<br />

more heat trapped in our atmosphere,<br />

compounding the greenhouse effect.<br />

This is not our fault. We were born<br />

into a world obsessed with consumption.<br />

A consumerist culture encouraging us<br />

through advertising to continually buy<br />

materialistic products we don’t need, with<br />

money we don’t have, to power with energy<br />

that is destroying the air you are breathing.<br />

We do have a responsibility to ensure our<br />

planet’s future exists and the means to do<br />

so are remarkably easy despite the enormity<br />

of the otherwise catastrophic future that<br />

could eventuate; a world changed beyond<br />

recognition, with large areas uninhabitable,<br />

climate refugees, extreme weather<br />

conditions and extensive starvation.<br />

On an everyday level you can reduce your<br />

impact on the climate. When you shower,<br />

cut it short with a four-minute maximum<br />

rule. Reduce your waste. Thrift shop instead<br />

of buying clothes from companies that use<br />

fast fashion ethics and always donate your<br />

goods to thrift shops instead of putting<br />

them into landfill. Don’t buy every trendy<br />

or homewares cushion. If<br />

you think about it, the space that cushion<br />

occupies on your couch equals a whole lot<br />

more space in reality; the fabric is farmed<br />

overseas, transported to Australia and<br />

occupies the landfill it is sent to when your<br />

article by jessica lehmann, illustration by yusra shahid<br />

Instagram idol promotes the next season<br />

cushions release you just ‘need’. There are<br />

myriads of ways to use less energy or to get<br />

our energy from cleaner, renewable sources.<br />

Did you know the Earth gets more energy<br />

from the Sun in an hour than the whole<br />

planet uses in a year?<br />

Reduce your meat consumption. The<br />

farmed meat you are eating is detrimental<br />

for the environment. If meat consumption<br />

increases at current rates, GHG emissions<br />

from agriculture will have increased 76%<br />

by 2050 global. If we all reduced meat<br />

consumption by 25%, it could result in a 51%<br />

decline in agricultural GHG emissions over<br />

the same period. Consider a ‘Climatarian<br />

diet’; less meat, less heat. And if you feel<br />

you cannot survive without red meat<br />

consider kangaroo meat, a sustainable meat<br />

alternative.<br />

The climate crisis is unfair because<br />

those that have done the least to cause the<br />

problem will feel the effects first and worst.<br />

The affluent control the largest pollutants<br />

and live lifestyles at a comfortable distance<br />

from, for example, Bangladesh – which will<br />

have 20% of its land mass uninhabitable by<br />

2099.<br />

As young citizens in a position with<br />

power to make a difference, our voices can<br />

speak out in a multitude of ways to make an<br />

impact. Get involved with the ‘Australian<br />

Youth Climate Coalition’; write a letter<br />

to a local member of parliament voicing<br />

your dissatisfaction; attend climate rallies;<br />

support political parties whom align with<br />

your climate action beliefs and talk about<br />

your opinions far and wide. We need to<br />

live sustainably and justly in a healthy<br />

environment, diverse with nature and<br />

within a community united in a common<br />

goal – our future is ours and our earth is<br />

our responsibility.<br />

science/engineering 28-29

Healthy Skepticism<br />

edition one<br />

lot’s wife<br />

Health advertising, like any other advertising, is meant to be compelling. Health<br />

ads may promise to fix anything and everything, to entice you to hand over exorbitant<br />

amounts of money. Adverts for health products and services, however, come with an extra<br />

proviso: they not only have a financial influence over consumers but dangerously sway<br />

community perceptions around healthcare.<br />

Like me, you may remember this unfortunate billboard (pictured) or its more explicit<br />

companions from when you were just old enough to vaguely understand what it meant.<br />

Due to this insensitive advertising, provocatively preying on the fears of men, the<br />

Advanced Medical Institute pocketed several millions selling their shonky products and<br />

services. AMI was receiving 7,000 calls a week allowing for thousands of clients to be<br />

locked into deceptive contracts for products that were not only ridiculously marked-up,<br />

but scientifically ineffective compared to mainstream medications. Whilst the Advertising<br />

Standards Bureau banned the billboards in 2008, only recently was the entire AMI charade<br />

legally unmasked. In 2015, AMI was charged with unconscionable conduct in the Federal<br />

Court against the ACCC (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission) and ordered<br />

to halt advertising and providing services.<br />

You would think that the problem was solved. Sadly, it wasn’t. Despite this official<br />

ruling, a simple trip to the AMI website reveals the serious limitations in the regulatory<br />

framework.<br />

Misleading Advertising<br />

As educated university students, why should we give a second thought to this little<br />

anecdote about an obvious scam? Well, firstly because the conduct of AMI is merely<br />

symbolic of the ridiculous behaviour which pervades the world of health advertising. Many<br />

health-related businesses have little regard for consumer protection when promoting<br />

their products, which results in a widespread culture of routinely deceiving consumers for<br />

financial gain.<br />

You may recall Reckitt Benckiser was recently fined $6 million for their blatantly<br />

deceptive marketing of Nurofen as ‘targeted pain relief’ for period pain or back pain. Many<br />

consumers opted for these ‘targeted’ products, unaware they had simply paid an outrageous<br />

premium for the same active ingredient in a normal Nurofen tablet. It was an evil but easy<br />

way for an already enormously wealthy company to make a profit anew.<br />

The same goes for companies like Swisse, whose products are ‘based on scientific<br />

research’ but their trials are generally self-funded and non-transparent. This is because it<br />

is more economical to pay for Nicole Kidman’s star power in your ad campaigns and sign<br />

million dollar partnerships with La Trobe, ABC and CSIRO, than scientifically prove your<br />

products.<br />

The list continues with modern health hacks and fads, such as giving your gut a charcoal<br />

cleanse (yummo) or the IV vitamin clinics that have been in and out of the news, being<br />

promoted as the cure for a hangover.<br />

Plot twist: sticking liquid vitamins into your bloodstream is a dangerous placebo<br />

with little or no scientific basis. And sure, charcoal cleansing ‘works’ – because they use<br />

charcoal in hospitals for drug overdoses to ‘get rid of the toxins,’ it will certainly work for<br />

your ‘toxins’ too. Unfortunately, it seems the human body is not quite that simple. This,<br />

however, doesn’t prevent people from making their fair share of cash out of pseudoscience.<br />

A Failing System

The second parallel to the AMI saga is that the Australian<br />

regulatory framework, screening processes and penalties for<br />

misleading and deceptive health advertising are not stringent<br />

enough to eradicate this kind of conduct. The many costs of this<br />

reality end up falling upon consumers.<br />

For example, the Therapeutic Goods Administration, which<br />

among other things currently regulates the registration and<br />

advertising of complementary medicines, does not assess these<br />

products for efficacy.<br />

So, if I wanted to sell a sugar pill and market it for bone health, I<br />

would first have to register the product in the Australian Register<br />

of Therapeutic Goods. I must also state my claim that the sugar<br />

pill ‘supports bone health’ in the Australian Register. In terms<br />

of ‘evidence’ to support my claim, all I need do is declare that<br />

I ‘hold’ the scientific evidence supporting those claims. Then I<br />

can advertise my sugar pill for bone health on any garish yellow<br />

billboard I choose. I might get into trouble because someone<br />

will complain that my claim breaches the Therapeutic Goods<br />

Advertising Code and is deceptive and misleading advertising, but<br />

the complaint will likely take several months to be resolved. By this<br />

I mean that with some luck on the complainant’s behalf, I might<br />

merely have to remove my advertising, but I will still walk away<br />

with a lovely net profit.<br />

In summary, the current system here doesn’t focus on removing<br />

the misleading adverts before they are published but ‘remedying’<br />

the situation after the damage has been done to consumers’<br />

wallets and perceptions. Despite reforms on the horizon for this<br />

terrible system, there is still a long road ahead to ensure consumer<br />

protection.<br />

Healthy Skepticism And Evidence-Based Science: What You Can Do?<br />

From the small vitamin collection in the kitchen pantry, to those<br />

irregular physio visits, we are and will continue to be consumers of<br />

many health-related goods and services. University students may<br />

not be the target demographic of all Swisse commercials, but health<br />

advertising can still subtly influence our perceptions of health and<br />

what we end up buying on that chance visit to Chemist Warehouse.<br />

It really comes down to consumers being educated and equipped<br />

with the skills to protect themselves against the pitfalls of the<br />

regulatory system and the greed of the industry. We deserve to<br />

enter a Pharmacy and clearly see what is worth buying from the<br />

labels, without a science degree or years of professional exposure<br />

to evidence-based medicine. But until a consumer utopia arrives,<br />

applying a bit of evidence-based knowledge to your encounters<br />

with health advertising will leave you better off.<br />

This might involve double checking the advice of a friend or shop<br />

assistant who said a certain pill banished all her health problems<br />

against the body of validated scientific research easily available<br />

online. For example, a simple search in Pubmed, a free online<br />

database of medically-related scientific studies, may reveal that<br />

Vitamin C supplements are unlikely to shorten the length of your<br />

cold.<br />

For those from a non-science background, the studies on<br />

this database generally compare a group of people on the same<br />

intervention, whether it is a pill or a type of treatment, with<br />

another group of people who are given a placebo pill. Theoretically,<br />

this allows for the efficacy of the pill in question to be properly<br />

examined. Although large trials with heavily controlled variables<br />

are difficult to conduct, the results of these studies provide us with<br />

a wealth of knowledge that is used to inform the practice of health<br />

professionals. If it is used by our doctors and pharmacists, then it is<br />

probably worth considering.<br />

Admittedly, the average student wanting to get rid of their cold<br />

faster is unlikely to spend their energy trawling through Pubmed. A<br />

uni-friendly option is to search for the medicine on NPS Medwise<br />

(http://www.nps.org.au/), a government-funded Australian website<br />

providing evidence-based information about all medications from<br />

grandma’s cholesterol-lowering meds to the Vitamin C you are<br />

contemplating purchasing. It is the easiest way to get informed<br />

by just reading the small summary of the evidence for that<br />

medication. Otherwise it is just worth becoming very sceptical of<br />

the following phrases on labels and in ads:<br />

’Clinically/Scientifically Tested/Proven’:<br />

Hmmm how intriguing. The implication here is that<br />

the product has been the subject of a clinical trial,<br />

however what you probably won’t find on the label is<br />

that the trial was:<br />

a) funded by the company themselves leaving<br />

them to tamper or selectively alter results to appear<br />

positive.<br />

b) included bias that significantly altered the validity<br />

of results. For example, if the participants knew<br />

whether they were given the intervention or placebo.<br />

c) conducted by another company that literally<br />

guaranteed a positive trial result by rigging<br />

everything.<br />

d) not tested for the specific health issues it is<br />

advertised as being able to treat.<br />

A side note: this same kind of analysis applies to more<br />

ambiguous such as ‘based on scientific evidence’ (courtesy<br />

of Swisse.) This gives little indication of the quality of the<br />

scientific evidence.<br />

‘More Effective Than The Leading Treatment’:<br />

An ambiguous statement that requires scepticism.<br />

What was the leading treatment? Was it a fair trial<br />

where both participant groups were given the same<br />

dose in equivalent conditions? Hmmm?? Approach<br />

with caution.<br />

’Natural’:<br />

Ummmm ok. What do you mean natural? Do you<br />

mean plant-based? Or not synthetic? Are you implying<br />

because it is ‘natural’ that it is less harsh on the body?<br />

Or do you mean it hasn’t been refined and processed?<br />

Natural unrefined arsenic can still kill you so the<br />

fact that the product is ‘natural’ doesn’t really tell us<br />

much. It is useful to remember that there is a definite<br />

distinction between ‘natural’ and ‘harmless’, even when<br />

it comes to vitamins.<br />

‘Traditionally Used’:<br />

The only validation needed to make this claim is....<br />

oh wait, no validation needed! Picking an obscure<br />

Peruvian root and selling it for back pain with the label<br />

‘traditionally used’ (even though Peruvians have never<br />

heard of it) occurs more than you would think. Yes,<br />

there are traditionally used herbs that have actually<br />

been traditionally used, so just make sure you google<br />

the name of it to check before spending on some<br />

useless placebo.<br />

So next time you find yourself perusing the aisles at<br />

Priceline, avoid taking the ads at face value and apply<br />

your healthy scepticism and evidence-based know-how<br />

instead: was that clinical trial actually transparent<br />

and independently funded? Did 95% of users truly feel<br />

they had more energy? And is that obscure Peruvian<br />

root really ‘traditionally used?’ With a simple change<br />

of thinking, you can avoid falling prey to the world of<br />

health advertising.<br />

article by sasha hall, artwork by julia thouas<br />

science/engineering 30-31

Tips for The Everyday Science Student<br />

edition one<br />

Hey everyone! How was your summer break? How many of you started the holiday thinking I’m gonna travel the<br />

world and have fun with my friends and family while hitting the gym every day. And I’m gonna be so ready for <strong>2017</strong>,<br />

coz you know, new year, new me but ended up slaving away at your job while having minor strokes every time you<br />

think of last semester’s exam results? Did you succeed in getting fat from eating your mum’s Christmas leftovers, and<br />

finally managing to drag yourself to class when uni eventually began? Yeah…me too.<br />

But don’t worry…it’s not all that bad. It’s still the very beginning of the new semester and we have more than<br />

enough time to make a difference for the better. That GPA isn’t gonna raise itself up you know. Even if you are an<br />

innocent jaffy (bless your soul...!) or a final year catastrophe like me; we all have the ability to make a difference to<br />

how we study this semester. Let’s do this!<br />

lot’s wife<br />

before class<br />

Read (Or At Least Scan) The Textbook<br />

Material BEFORE You Come To Class<br />

But if you are like me and don’t wanna<br />

invest in textbooks that cost a soul and a<br />

half, just scan through the lecture notes<br />

you can get from Moodle. You don’t need to<br />

read every line. Just the topics are enough.<br />

That way, at least you’ll know what the<br />

hell you will be learning that day. At least<br />

skim through the slides while you wait for<br />

the lecturer to start the lecture (after they<br />

finally figure out how to get the computer<br />

working).<br />

Make Sure You Have All The Appropriate<br />

Materials Needed For Class<br />

And for god’s sake, don’t go to practicals<br />

without the manual and don’t come to<br />

lectures with no notes or laptop and just<br />

stare at the lecturer behind an empty desk.<br />

We all wanna do that by week 12 but as I<br />

said that GPA isn’t gonna raise itself! You<br />

can’t gain anything without putting in the<br />

effort. This isn’t high school anymore. No<br />

one gives a damn about whether you keep<br />

up with your studies or not. You are the<br />

only person who can save yourself.<br />

during class<br />

Take Organized, Clear Notes<br />

Either make annotations on a computer<br />

or write on printed slides or make your<br />

own notes – just do something! Don’t<br />

listen like a zombie without making notes<br />

because there is NO way you’ll remember<br />

everything. You are more likely to be<br />

actively involved to the lecture when you<br />

have your hands busy.<br />

Be Alert And On Time<br />

No one wants to come to lectures. And<br />

by week 12 no one wants to step inside Uni<br />

altogether. But regular attendance is a sign<br />

of a serious student. However, creeping<br />

into the lecture 45 min late doesn’t really<br />

count. Keep an eye out for announcements,<br />

dates and deadlines; you don’t wanna log<br />

into Moodle one morning and realise you<br />

have an online test due in 10 minutes or<br />

find out that mid-sem you thought has only<br />

Multiple Choice Questions actually has a<br />

ton of Short Answer Questions.<br />

Ask For Clarification Whenever The<br />

Material Is Unclear<br />

It’s always better to ask for clarification<br />

immediately after you come across<br />

confusions since we all know ‘I’ll email the<br />

lecturer when I’m home’ won’t ever work<br />

because we forget everything once we leave<br />

the lecture hall. If you’re too shy to talk,<br />

email the lecturer while you are still in the<br />

lecture. That way, you won’t forget. Start a<br />

new email and keep adding questions to it<br />

as the lecture progresses. Then simply hit<br />

send before you get up and leave.<br />

article by chulani jithma kaluarachchi

during class<br />

Don’t Tolerate The Distractions Of Other<br />

Students<br />

To that one person who always decides<br />

to eat a huge bag of chips, chewing them<br />

loud as they can – eat them after class.<br />

You don’t die of hunger before that. To<br />

the couple who always wants to cuddle<br />

during lecture time – go get a room. You<br />

guys are distracting the people around<br />

you and tittering with each other while<br />

ignoring the lecture is in no way #goals.<br />

And for everyone using laptops – why are<br />

you paying thousands of dollars to come<br />

to Uni just to chat on Facebook during the<br />

whole lecture? And to the ones who talk<br />

during the lecture – you are wasting your<br />

time and distracting others too. Don’t let<br />

other people distract you from listening.<br />

Don’t be afraid to tell noisy people to quiet<br />

down if they are disturbing you. I know you<br />

wanna throw a shoe at them to shut them<br />

up, but because that’s not allowed, we’ll just<br />

have to talk to them. Whether they waste<br />

their/their parents hard earned money by<br />

being distracted is none of your business.<br />

Do not let them be a hindrance for your<br />

productivity.<br />

after class<br />

Re-read Your Notes The Same Day<br />

Make sure that you have written down<br />

everything and didn’t miss something<br />

important. This gives you an opportunity<br />

to put the entire day’s lecture ‘together’,<br />

since the memory of the actual lecture<br />

is still in your mind. If you wait a couple<br />

of days before looking at your notes, you<br />

won’t remember the lecture and you will be<br />

relying on your notes alone, instead of your<br />

memory.<br />

Listen To MULO If You Missed A Lecture<br />

If you missed a lecture because of work<br />

or simply because you were too lazy to<br />

get out of bed, make sure you listen to the<br />

lecture on the same day. Do you really think<br />

listening to 30+ lectures on 1.5x speed one<br />

week before finals is gonna help you learn<br />

anything? Okay, I know it works for some<br />

people, but I highly doubt it would for most.<br />

Listen to the missed lecture in the bus if<br />

you have to; don’t go to lectures tomorrow<br />

not knowing what was done today.<br />

Use Diagrams And Tables Instead Of<br />

Multiple Bullet Points<br />

Most textbooks have diagrams and tables<br />

summarising each section. Study from<br />

them instead of reading long paragraphs of<br />

texts. Then you can see all the important<br />

information at a glance instead of having to<br />

search for them among a sea of sentences.<br />

Location<br />

Find a place to study that is free of interruptions and<br />

distractions. Trying to study at a table in the Campus<br />

Centre, surrounded by 15 other people with a burrito in<br />

one hand might not be the best option. Go to a library or<br />

find a quiet corner at Uni. Even if you study with a group<br />

of friends, find a place that won’t distract you. Buy food<br />

and drinks before you start studying so that you won’t<br />

have to leave in the middle of the session.<br />

Self-Discipline<br />

Fall into some sort of a routine. Develop your own<br />

study rules and stick to them. You must establish<br />

your own study times, listen to lectures actively,<br />

conscientiously do the lab exercises, etc. I know that new<br />

TV series you just found is so addictive and you’re still<br />

suppressing the urge to binge watch the whole thing<br />

instead of studying, but keep reminding yourself what<br />

your priories are. You need to take responsibility for your<br />

own triumph bcz no one else will.<br />

Study In 1 Hour Blocks<br />

The amount you need to study for a class differs from<br />

person to person. You never want to study in blocks<br />

longer than 1 hour. If you sit with a textbook for 4 hours,<br />

you will gain information during the first hour; after<br />

that your brain stops concentrating. After an hour, take<br />

a break. You can spend 10 minutes eating something,<br />

scrolling through Facebook or talking to your friend,<br />

whatever, just don’t study. Your brain can only handle 50-<br />

60 minutes of work, then it needs a break. After a break,<br />

go back and focus.<br />

Study Effectively<br />

Make your study time as uninterrupted as possible.<br />

Pick a good time. Keep stocked up on stationary you<br />

need so there is no reason to interrupt your studies. Use<br />

the same place (if possible). Be efficient with your time.<br />

Hide your phone. If you can’t see it, you might not feel<br />

like using it. You won’t die if you miss a tweet or ignore a<br />

snap. Put away all other distractions. Every time you get<br />

interrupted, you lose information. If you really wanna<br />

change, you’re gonna have to make some sacrifices.<br />

Use Planners<br />

Prioritize things that must get done, what you should<br />

get done and what can be done at other times. Most<br />

science units have lots of in-semester assessments that<br />

add up to a large chuck of your final mark. Missing the<br />

chance to do easy online tests just because you forgot<br />

its due date is such a shame. The more you score during<br />

semester; the less you have to worry about the finals.<br />

Buy a cheap planner or simply use the calendar on your<br />

phone to set reminders 1-2 days before something is due.<br />

That way, you’ll never miss deadlines.<br />

Most importantly, keep a positive attitude!<br />

An education is a gift to you.<br />

science/engineering<br />

Happy studying everyone!<br />

how to study<br />


Science News<br />

Monash Research Finds Humans<br />

Likely Cause Of Australian Megafauna<br />

Extinction<br />

Recently published research has found that the<br />

extinction of megafauna in southwest Australia was<br />

not linked with climate change as previously thought<br />

but rather with ‘imperceptible overkill’ by humans.<br />

The study was led by Dr. Sander van der Kaars,<br />

adjunct research fellow at the Monash School of<br />

Earth, Atmosphere and Environment. The analysis<br />

was undertaken on a sediment core collected 100km<br />

offshore of southwest Australia, allowing the team<br />

to track environmental change and megafauna<br />

abundance over the past 150,000 years.<br />

The research, published in Nature Communications,<br />

found that the extinction took place approximately<br />

43,000 to 45,000 years ago and was completed<br />

within 4000 years of humans colonising Australi<br />

Source: Monash Science News<br />

edition one<br />

Researchers Believe They Have<br />

Found Observational Evidence Of A<br />

Holographic Universe<br />

In a report in Physics Review Letters, a team<br />

of theoretical physicists and astrophysicists have<br />

published findings of evidence supporting a<br />

holographic explanation of the universe.<br />

The holographic explanation of the universe states<br />

that reality (three dimensions plus time) is contained<br />

or projected onto a 2D surface. Professor Kostas<br />

Skenderis from the University of Southhampton<br />

School of Mathematic Sciences explains that the<br />

idea of a holographic universe is similar to ordinary<br />

holograms; 3D images are coded onto a 2D surface,<br />

such as holograms on credit cards or bank notes.<br />

However he explains “The entire universe is coded.”<br />

By using cosmological observations to investigate<br />

irregularities in the cosmic microwave background<br />

(the ‘imprint’ on the universe caused by the Big Bang),<br />

the researchers have concluded that there is as much<br />

evidence supporting the holographic explanation as<br />

for traditional explanations.<br />

lot’s wife<br />

Computer Interface Allows ‘Locked-In’<br />

Patients To Communicate<br />

An international team led by the Wyss Center<br />

for Bio and Neuroengineering in Switzerland have<br />

demonstrated the use of a brain-computer interface<br />

to communicate with patients suffering from complete<br />

locked-in state (CLIS) – when patients are paralysed<br />

to the extent of eye-movement and blinking loss.<br />

Patients who are otherwise unable to communicate<br />

were able to answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ questions through<br />

a brain-computer interface that measured changes in<br />

brain blood-oxygen levels. The interface was initially<br />

calibrated using questions with known answers<br />

(“your husband’s name is Joachim?”), after which<br />

more open questions were asked. During trials,<br />

the interface produced correct answer 70% of the<br />

time. All four patients the technology was tested on<br />

answered yes to the question, “Are you happy?”<br />

Source: PLOS Biology<br />

Australian Scientists Create Super<br />

Strong Graphite Out Of Soybean Oil<br />

Everyday cooking ingredient soybean oil has been<br />

used by Australian scientists to create graphene – an<br />

atomically thin material that is 200 times stronger<br />

than steel and more conductive than copper.<br />

Created in the lab by a team of CSIRO scientists,<br />

the graphene was produced in a process that was<br />

described as faster and more energy-efficient than<br />

other methods. Research describing the method was<br />

published recently in Nature Communications, with<br />

authors stating they believe the use of a renewable<br />

graphene precursor could cut down production costs<br />

significantly.<br />

The issue of scalability of graphene remains<br />

– currently the largest graphene film that can be<br />

produced is the size of a credit card. However, the<br />

CSIRO are looking into developments in water<br />

filtration and solar panels.<br />

Source: ABC News<br />

Source: Science Daily<br />

Global Emissions Remain Stagnant For<br />

3rd Year In A Row<br />

The end of 2016 marked the third consecutive<br />

year that global carbon dioxide emissions remained<br />

relatively flat. Global carbon dioxide emissions<br />

reached 36 gigatons last year, approximately the<br />

same in 2014 and 2015.<br />

In a study published in Nature Climate Change,<br />

researchers aimed to track the progress of over 150<br />

nations that signed the Paris Agreement in 2015. The<br />

study found that the main drivers of the emissions<br />

slowdown were reduced coal use from major powers<br />

such as China. In the United States, emissions<br />

reductions were also due to rapid gains in the natural<br />

gas, wind and solar sectors. However, much more<br />

action is required to achieve global reduction in<br />

emissions and reach the targets set by the Paris<br />

Agreement.<br />

Source: Nature<br />

Black Humour Corresponds With Higher<br />

Levels Of Intelligence<br />

Understanding and appreciating black humour<br />

– defined as humour surrounding morbid or tragic<br />

topics – has been linked with higher levels of verbal<br />

and non-verbal intelligence. In a study published in<br />

Cognitive Processing, researchers had participants<br />

rate their understanding and enjoyment of 12 cartoons<br />

from the infamous dark humour comic, The Black<br />

Book by Uli Stein. The study also found that those<br />

with ‘high black humour preference’ also displayed<br />

the lowest mood disturbance and aggression levels<br />

in response to the comics, whilst those with low<br />

preference displayed the highest levels of aggression.<br />

The authors of the study said that their findings<br />

suggested that aggression and poor moods could<br />

cloud people’s ability to ‘get the joke.’<br />

Source: The Guardian<br />

article by science & engineering sub-editor team<br />

illustration by maria volobueva

contributers:<br />

sam allen<br />

john henry<br />

nick jarrett<br />

molly dixon<br />

dylan marshall<br />

rachael welling<br />

erica gage<br />

linh thuy nguyen<br />

reece hooker<br />

Arts/Culture<br />

arts/culture<br />


The Tension Between Artistic And Moral Judgements<br />

edition one<br />

lot’s wife<br />

For most people, the initial answer is uncontroversial.<br />

It’s obvious that the unsavoury details of an artist’s private and<br />

working life, for instance, don’t interfere with our appraisal of their<br />

works as a matter of general principle. If someone were to ask you<br />

“did you like Crime and Punishment?”, it would be eccentric to reply “I<br />

can’t say, I haven’t read Dostoevsky’s biography yet”. So far, so good;<br />

this seems pretty clear.<br />

When we refer to acts, intentions and consequences in the<br />

real world, the term ‘good’ is often used as a moral assessment;<br />

to art, ‘good’ is an assessment of quality. Both are normative, not<br />

descriptive, uses of the term—they express a particular point of<br />

view and not a matter of bare fact, but the resemblance stops there.<br />

We respect the critical distinction between art and morality while<br />

things go smoothly, when our artists don’t behave too badly to<br />

warrant our attention when appraising their work, or when the<br />

work doesn’t transgress our moral norms too far. If an artist is a<br />

conventionally good person, for instance, we don’t consider their<br />

works intrinsically better as a consequence; authors like Dan Brown<br />

and Stephenie Meyer seem to be decent enough people, yet this<br />

doesn’t affect the literary (de-)merit of their novels.<br />

But some artists do some incredibly, extraordinarily despicable<br />

things, and this makes the idea that ‘bad people can make good art’<br />

more of a burden to maintain for consistency’s sake, rather than<br />

a harmless platitude. When we learn of an artwork’s unsavoury<br />

background history, it often becomes impossible to ‘unsee’ it<br />

in the work, and as much as we want to pretend that art can be<br />

disassociated from its questionable origins, few of us would be<br />

willing to fully accept this in practice. What are we to make of a<br />

painting of a child by the convicted sex offender Rolf Harris? How<br />

are we to aesthetically and disinterestedly assess the artistic merit<br />

of the portrayal of sexual violence in the film Rosemary’s Baby, when<br />

the director Roman Polanski was to commit statutory rape not ten<br />

years later?<br />

This becomes an even more prickly issue when we consider<br />

artworks that include real moral wrongs—how can we critique,<br />

on purely aesthetic grounds, the brutal real-life slaughter of a<br />

water buffalo in Apocalypse Now? For many, that sort of thing<br />

could impinge on the merit of the work, as it brought about real<br />

suffering. Perhaps we could try to make some qualifications here for<br />

consistency’s sake. When we say that morality is distinct from art,<br />

we may moderate this claim—perhaps when we make judgements,<br />

morality is only distinct from art as imitation. If a person or animal<br />

is harmed in a film in the making of an artwork, our judgements<br />

on the work are no longer a matter of aesthetic taste. A snuff film,<br />

however tastefully shot, is not art as it shows reality essentially as<br />

it is.<br />

Art is, at its core, representation; an artwork is a creation one step<br />

removed from reality, and not the reality itself; and if what we are<br />

observing is a real-life evil on the film screen, we can criticise it as<br />

we would a real-life action. Therefore, when Bernardo Bertolucci<br />

not only permitted, but included in his film the sexual assault<br />

of actor Maria Schneider in Last Tango in Paris, we have sufficient<br />

warrant to criticise not only Bertolucci as committing a moral<br />

wrong, but also to condemn the quality of the film itself, as the<br />

wrong has occurred beyond the realm of representation and into<br />

the concrete world that permits moral critique. If the assault was<br />

a make-believe performance, on the other hand, we would have no<br />

warrant to do so.<br />

Yet this doesn’t seem so intuitively correct when we apply this<br />

‘art as mimesis’ criterion to harmless instances of reality seeping<br />

into art. If we watch a short film of a man drinking tea, and he<br />

is in fact drinking tea, it is dogmatic to insist that we are not<br />

watching art, but just a movie of a man drinking tea. If anyone puts<br />

something forward that can be observed aesthetically, it can be<br />

regarded as art and interpreted accordingly.

Drawing further distinctions about what does and does not<br />

constitute genuine art within this broad criteria becomes a matter<br />

of barren metaphysics.<br />

Once we accept that art is really just any sort of creative act open<br />

to interpretation, the internal distinction between art and reality is<br />

not such an easy one to draw, and we are inevitably faced with the<br />

conclusion that even a vile act of real cruelty could be considered<br />

art. The performance-artist Marina Abramović continually<br />

emphasised this point in the 1970s in her own works, by setting<br />

herself on fire and playing with knives.<br />

It can sometimes happen that the real immoralities that intrude<br />

on an artistic work can contribute something to its aesthetic<br />

quality overall. As the fantasy author China Mieville has remarked,<br />

it is the jaw-dropping racism of H. P. Lovecraft that gave his works<br />

such a distinctive and unforgettable flavour. For Lovecraft, the<br />

very concept of racial intermixing was a revolting idea, and he did<br />

not disguise this in his works—indeed this view is foundational to<br />

some of his most suspenseful and influential works like The Shadow<br />

Over Innsmouth. Yet although we would rightly condemn someone<br />

today for harbouring even a tenth of Lovecraft’s racist views today,<br />

his short stories are oddly enlivened by his horrible ideology. The<br />

profound sense of horror and revulsion that elevates the work into<br />

something convincing and immersive just happened to be the byproduct<br />

of these personal views.<br />

So, upon reflection, if we are to be consistent, we must face up to<br />

the sometimes unpalatable consequences—morally contemptible<br />

as it may appear to us, the merit of an artwork and the morality of<br />

its origins or content have to remain conceptually distinct, even<br />

at the very extremes. If we maintain this principle in general, it<br />

must logically entail the uncomfortable and immoral as well as the<br />

morally pleasant or neutral.<br />

If an artwork is<br />

,,<br />

article & illustration by john henry<br />

somehow immoral<br />

in its origins or<br />

its content, does<br />

it make sense to<br />

call that artwork<br />

itself inferior as<br />

a result? ,,<br />

arts/culture 36-37

Artists Should Be Punished, Not Celebrated<br />

edition one<br />

Let’s be honest. Despite their numerous indiscretions, public gaffes and even crimes, we hold<br />

celebrities in a ludicrously high regard. We are, for some reason, willing to ignore the immoral and illegal<br />

acts they commit so that we may benefit from continued production of their art. This cannot continue,<br />

and a boycott of their work is what is required.<br />

Notable celebrities such as Chris Brown and Mel Gibson have all earned varying degrees of fame and<br />

success in their careers, and still command the attention of millions, and yet they are perpetrators of<br />

domestic violence. Brown’s abuse of then-partner Rihanna is common knowledge and, despite this,<br />

he has since released five albums with reasonable success and become a face of a footwear company,<br />

Snipes. Mel Gibson, charged with physical assault on his then-partner, has gone on to direct the Oscarnominated<br />

Hacksaw Ridge.<br />

By separating acts from the artist, we are ignoring what both informs and drives these people to do<br />

what they do. An artwork is not distinct from the behaviours and actions of the artist, and by ignoring<br />

the indiscretions, we are normalising and even forgiving these awful acts.<br />

This attempt to ignore the misdeeds of celebrities is becoming endemic in pop culture, with people<br />

so infatuated with a celebrity’s work that they are willing to ignore criminal acts. Take the #freebieber<br />

slogan which whirled around the internet following Justin Bieber’s arrest for a DUI. No matter that he<br />

was driving while drink and endangering countless lives, he was too precious to be punished and the<br />

incident has left no mark on his popularity.<br />

Furthermore, and most importantly, by refusing to punish these celebrities we are silencing their<br />

victims and are continuing to suppress much needed dialogue on these crimes. Woody Allen, a famed<br />

filmmaker and actor, has been accused of the sexual assault of his adoptive daughter, Dylan Farrow.<br />

Whilst no convictions were upheld, Allen continues to direct at least one film per year. For most, being<br />

accused of sexual assault would make one unemployable. For Allen, job opportunities continued in quick<br />

succession, effectively diminishing and ignoring the potential victim Dylan Farrow.<br />

Giving artists accolades and fortune when they commit serious misdeeds only works to silence their<br />

victims. This is because they are celebrated for the two minutes of a song or two hours in a cinema.<br />

Separating the work from the artist only enhances and magnifies the victims respective harm and<br />

contributes to a continued cycle of normalising crime. We need to hold these people accountable for<br />

their actions, and have them treated as any other offender. Otherwise, these crimes will continue to go<br />

unpunished.<br />

lot’s wife<br />

article by nick jarrett<br />

Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds: Gig Review<br />

At the second performance of their Australian tour, fans young and old were treated to an<br />

electric and energetic performance. Cave’s powerful stage presence remains as palpable as ever.<br />

The Bad Seeds formed in 1986 and since then, have cemented their name as one of Australia’s biggest<br />

and longest lasting rock exports.<br />

The support act, The Necks, are an Australian 3-piece experimental jazz band that provided a great<br />

atmosphere and sound track for the start of the gig. However, it was obvious that the masses of fans had<br />

come for Cave.<br />

The Bad Seeds set list consisted mainly of the band’s most recent 2016 release Skeleton Tree. This is<br />

their 16th full studio album and can best be described as atmospheric, lyrical and deeply personal, as<br />

much of the record’s production was shaped by the tragic death of Cave’s son in 2015. Spacing out the<br />

newer, heavier style of music with fan favourites from older albums such as The Boat Song and From Her<br />

to Eternity was a good choice to maintain the energy of the crowd… not that Cave’s performance wasn’t<br />

enough already.<br />

Cave’s artistry as a musician and performer was apparent from the second he appeared on stage. There<br />

was an anticipation in the audience that made me almost sure he would appear in a puff of smoke, like<br />

some kind of enigmatic magic-man. As the rest of the band entered, a hush momentarily fell over the<br />

audience. When Cave took the stage seconds later it was broken by a deafening wave of cheering and<br />

clapping. At the age of 59, he is still a true rock star; reaching into the audience, holding hands with<br />

those lucky enough to have fought their way to the front of the crowd.<br />

It would be wrong not to acknowledge the brilliance that is Warren Ellis, the band’s multi-talented<br />

violinist (Ballarat-born) who shines as a live performer. Ellis’s famously experimental violin style is<br />

heightened immensely in a live setting. He rips into the songs that maintain the band’s rock roots with<br />

ferocity and lends beautiful, sensitive sounds to tracks of the ballad variety. On stage, both Ellis and<br />

Cave radiate joy and give passionate performances.<br />

A personal highlight of the performance was the encore. The narrative track Stagger Lee from the 1996<br />

album Murder Ballads really becomes an epic with the full brunt of the band behind it.<br />

I would 100% recommend to anyone who is a music lover to go see Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds live<br />

at some point. The depth of emotion, energy and pure musical talent makes them an act which bears<br />

relevance to the lives of so many.<br />

The tour reached Melbourne’s Sydney Myer Music Bowl on the 27th and 28th of January and concluded<br />

in Perth on the 31st of January.<br />

review & illustration by molly dixon

Monash University<br />

Program <strong>2017</strong><br />

Student Theatre<br />

Compiled by Dylan Marshall<br />


THE MUST O SHOW ‘17 –<br />



O Week: 20 – 23 Feb | Written &<br />

Directed by Justin Gardam & Fraser<br />

Mitchell, Musical Direction by Earl<br />

Marrows, Produced by Sophie<br />

Ashkanasy<br />



From Week 3 | Fun accessible<br />

performance workshops all year,<br />

culminating in public showings<br />

<strong>2017</strong> MUST SEASON LAUNCH<br />

16 March | Produced by Michelle<br />

Robertson<br />


LIVE!<br />

7 – 13 April | Written by Justin<br />

Gardam, Directed by Max Paton,<br />

Musical Direction by Will Yates<br />


Mon 1 May (TBC) | Curated &<br />

Produced by Krystal Gayton & Tyrie<br />

Aspinall<br />


MUST Space<br />

27 April – 6 May | The Complete<br />

Works of Shakespeare (Abridged),<br />

Directed by Niamh Percy<br />


Mon 15 May | Curated by Annabelle<br />

Ballard from the Monash Creative<br />

Writers<br />

AWAKENING - Remount at<br />

fortyfivedownstairs<br />

10 – 21 May | Adapted & Directed by<br />

Daniel Lammin<br />



1 – 12 August | Curated & Produced<br />

by Lucy Rosenblum & Kat Yates<br />


WORK in the MUST Space<br />

17 – 26 August | The Taming of the<br />

Shrew, Directed by Gina Dickson<br />


Mon 28 August (TBC) | Curated &<br />

Produced by Krystal Gayton & Tyrie<br />

Aspinall<br />



7 – 16 September | Curated by<br />

Amber Bock & James Malcher<br />



21 – 30 September | Written &<br />

Directed by Tara Dowler<br />



From Week 1 | Fun accessible<br />

performance workshops, culminating<br />

in public showings 5 – 7 October<br />


Mon 9 October | Curated by<br />

Annabelle Ballard from the Monash<br />

Creative Writers<br />


Telling in Communities<br />

Semester Two | Curated & Directed<br />

by Grace Ulrich<br />


Mid - Late October<br />


11 – 20 May | Adapted by<br />

Genevieve Atkins & Directed by<br />

Helena Dixon<br />



25 May – 3 June | Directed by<br />

Stephen Amos, Musical Direction<br />

by Will Yates, Assistant Direction &<br />

Choreography by Diane Pereira<br />

arts/culture<br />


The Price Of Gaming<br />

edition one<br />

lot’s wife<br />

My partner and I recently made the pilgrimage to EB Games in Chadstone. Not<br />

to buy anything, but to cancel our pre-order for the Nintendo Switch, Nintendo’s newest<br />

console. We looked at our respective bank accounts and decided we couldn’t justify the<br />

$500 that the system would cost us. $500 is rent for a month, or the bills for half a year, or<br />

a year of myki money. Choices like this are common for us; we’ve picked a hobby that costs<br />

money. It just feels like video games cost so damn much.<br />

In truth, gaming has always been expensive. No home console has ever cost less than<br />

US$250 at launch. The ‘Australia tax’ slaps up to 88% extra on to the recommended<br />

retail price of digital products. Downloadable content (or DLC) for games is now entirely<br />

pervasive within the industry, and very little of it is free. Add to that the fact that<br />

videogames are ludicrously expensive to produce, and so the prospect of squeezing extra<br />

money out of consumers is attractive for publishers. But it feels like additional costs are<br />

being built into the business model of modern gaming, and they are becoming increasingly<br />

difficult to avoid.<br />

Types of Additional Costs<br />

Additional costs take many forms. One of the oldest is the expansion pack, which adds<br />

anything from new items to entire storylines to an already released game, and often cost<br />

almost as much as the original. Recently however, The Sims 4 publisher EA Games came<br />

under fire because they were allegedly cutting content from the base game in order to sell<br />

it later in expansion packs. A recent and small example is the inclusion of a butler in a<br />

recent expansion pack for The Sims 4, a feature that was available on launch in The Sims 2.<br />

Whether or not this was actually cut from the base game of The Sims 4 is pure speculation.<br />

Regardless, EA have released no less than seventeen content packs for The Sims 4 since<br />

launch. All of these together will cost the Australian consumer AU$420. You want the full<br />

experience? Be prepared to fork out the cash.<br />

Another form is micro-transactions; small purchases (typically less than $5) that enhance<br />

the game in some way. Micro-transactions can be anything from cosmetic content that<br />

alters the appearance of something in game, to ‘pay-to-win’ content that actually gives the<br />

player some kind of advantage. Micro-transactions in major release games are generally<br />

frowned upon – many feel that paying for a fully-priced game should rule out needing to<br />

pay for extra content – but micro-transactions are common nonetheless. Gaming giant Call<br />

of Duty: Infinite Warfare contains micro-transactions in the form of random caches, where<br />

players can buy a bundle of mystery (supposedly cosmetic) items. But it turns out some of<br />

the weapons given in the random drops have better stats than those the player can earn by<br />

simply playing the game. And keep in mind, Infinite Warfare is a multiplayer game. So now<br />

the costs aren’t even in simply owning a game, they lie in being able to experience it in a<br />

way that is fair.<br />

One of the newer forms is the pre-order bonus. Purchase a game before it releases and<br />

receive certain content that will never be available any other way. The benefits for the<br />

publishers are clear; if someone pre-orders a game, they’ve essentially bought it before any<br />

reviews of the game are published. Unfavourable reviews are circumvented because they<br />

simply don’t exist yet. In certain cases, this model has been pushed to the extreme. Deus Ex:<br />

Mankind Divided pissed just about everyone off with their tiered pre-order bonus structure;<br />

the more people who pre-ordered, the more pre-order content everyone would get. At the<br />

highest tier, the game would actually release an entire week early. Many perceived this as<br />

the publisher holding consumers ransom. You want the full experience? You better hope<br />

everyone else does too. And if you didn’t want the value of your purchase in the hands of<br />

countless, faceless others? Simply buy the Collector’s <strong>Edition</strong>, which contains all of the preorder<br />

content – for US$150US. Within weeks the pre-order scheme was cancelled, and the<br />

developer issued an apology.

The Cautionary Tale of Evolve<br />

No pricing scandal is more infamous than the 2015 shooter, Evolve, developed by Turtle Rock<br />

Studios. Before Evolve even launched, Turtle Rock shot itself right in the foot with convoluted<br />

pricing structure and an avalanche of additional content (and hence costs). Evolve would ship<br />

in three editions, the most expensive costing US$100. On top of that, US$60 of additional,<br />

online only content was available to download at launch. Individual characters for the game<br />

could cost up to US$15 each. Individual skins as much as US$8. The cheapest way to get<br />

everything Evolve had to offer at launch would set you back US$185 – that’s near AU$250. You<br />

want the full experience? Well fuck you.<br />

Evolve had every additional cost possible. The mountain of DLC available at launch went<br />

beyond accusations of cutting content from a game to sell later – it was a textbook example.<br />

The multiple ways to simply buy the game showed a focus on snapping up pre-orders over<br />

delivering a solid experience at launch. The ridiculous costs of single pieces of content made<br />

it clear that micro-transactions were built into the game. And embroiled at the centre of this<br />

controversy, the creative director of Turtle Rock Studios Phil Robb essentially pleaded with<br />

consumers to reconsider their anger. “I don’t like people thinking we’re doing underhanded,<br />

dirty shit” he said. “If we’re going to make money we want to feel good about the way we’ve<br />

done it,”<br />

The issue isn’t about making money. The Sims 4 in its complete form costs around double<br />

what Evolve can cost. The issue is value. Where $15 in The Sims 4 will get you a bundle of new<br />

cosmetics, items and gameplay, $15 in Evolve will get you a single character. It’s not about<br />

being underhanded or dirty. It’s the unreasonable expectation that there must always be more<br />

to buy; that players should take whatever price they are given or have their game held for<br />

ransom until they can afford the rest of it.<br />

Funnily enough, Evolve did terribly. The player base hemorrhaged after launch to less than<br />

400 in the world. The game then became free-to-play, but still didn’t manage to sustain a<br />

healthy community. And less than a month after that, Turtle Rock Studios abandoned Evolve<br />

all together. Was it the huge backlash over the pricing that killed the game, or was it that<br />

Evolve simply wasn’t fun? Questions like these pervade every failed game and it’s unlikely that<br />

Evolve will be the last to upset players with its cost.<br />

arts/culture<br />

In truth, gaming has<br />

Gaming Without (Some of) The Cost<br />

For myself and many other students with limited disposable incomes, it can feel like we are<br />

priced out of modern gaming. While most additional costs are entirely optional, it can feel like<br />

publishers are constantly dangling the carrot. Still there are some relatively easy ways to still<br />

choose gaming as a hobby without feeling like there is always more to buy.<br />

Patient Gaming: Most games eventually go on sale. Games with DLC often re-release as a<br />

bundle pack with everything included, in some cases cheaper than the original game. Sites<br />

such as IsThereAnyDeal can be setup to email you when a game goes on sale. In the case of<br />

Evolve and Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, the pre-order DLC was eventually given to everyone for<br />

free after their respective controversies.<br />

Be Informed: I know this sounds a little obvious, but simple things like reading reviews,<br />

watching a stream of a game or googling ‘Is [this DLC] worth it?’ will give you an idea of<br />

whether or not the actual content of a game is worth your money.<br />

Make Use Of The Market: Unless you are dead certain you will replay a game, trading in or<br />

selling old games is a quick way of saving money. EB Games does store credit for traded games,<br />

and JB-Hifi frequently do trade-in deals. On the flip side, you can also buy games preowned.<br />

The argument against this is that you are no longer giving your money to the developers, only<br />

the retailer – but that’s a question of ethics, and where yours lead is on you.<br />

Older Games: By virtue of their age alone many games are ridiculously cheap. Microsoft, Sony<br />

and Nintendo all offer older games for download to their consoles. Online PC game retailers<br />

such as Steam and Good Old Games keep libraries of older games and frequently send them to<br />

sale. EA Games’ Origin Store for PC allows players to access older games entirely for free and<br />

often to keep.<br />

Indie Games: Indie games are currently experiencing a huge resurgence thanks to the<br />

widespread nature of PC gaming. Anything from rhythm games to RPGs to story-based<br />

adventure games are out there, all easily downloadable online and most under $20.<br />

The One I Will Not Advocate: Also known as, ‘The One the Government recently tried to block<br />

but did so really poorly making it easy to continue to use but you didn’t hear that from me, no<br />

sir.’<br />

The good thing about videogames as a hobby is you can take it as far as you like. You can get<br />

all serious like me and lament the shady business practices of major games publishers, or you<br />

can just focus on saving money where you can. But that’s the best thing about videogames –<br />

the possibility, the interactivity – at the end of the day, it’s up to you.<br />

always been expensive<br />

article by rachael welling, illustration by erica gage<br />


Disrupting The ‘White Cube’: Two Exhibitions On Indigenous Art<br />

edition one<br />

These two exhibitions – Sovereignty at ACCA and Who’s Afraid of Colour?<br />

at NGV Australia – provide a glimpse into the array of artistic forms from<br />

First Nations contemporary artists, showcasing a myriad of vibrant and<br />

distinct cultural expressions. By no means exhaustive, these two exhibitions<br />

survey the vital and proliferous landscape of contemporary Indigenous art,<br />

exhibiting new commissions alongside historical works. With Sovereignty, ACCA<br />

presents an exhibition that centres upon the contemporary art of First Nations<br />

peoples of Victoria, while Who’s Afraid of Colour? focuses on Indigenous female<br />

artists – ‘great women innovators – transformers of tradition and precedent.’<br />

Both exhibitions seek to challenge presumptions about how Indigenous art<br />

is conceived and interpreted, exploring a range of mediums from traditional<br />

woven objects to sculpture, painting, photographs, and video installations.<br />

The historical backdrop in which Sovereignty and Who’s Afraid of Colour? take<br />

place is inescapable. By the fact of their very existence, these exhibitions are<br />

inherently political, illustrating the intimate link between art and activism.<br />

The title Sovereignty is itself an assertion of First Nations peoples’ claim to the<br />

land, bringing to mind the legal fiction of terra nullius and the history of illegal<br />

invasion and occupation, dispossession and destruction. The exhibition is<br />

explicitly situated amidst current debates related to constitutional recognition<br />

and treaty, and the historic and ongoing struggles of First Nations people for<br />

self-determination and land rights. Who’s Afraid of Colour? boldly proclaims<br />

a politics of difference and identity, centring the perspectives and voices of<br />

Indigenous women.<br />

The conversation surrounding ‘Australia/Invasion Day’ demonstrates<br />

there is widespread and collective cognitive dissonance when it comes to<br />

acknowledging the foundational violence on which the Australian colonial<br />

state rests. As a nation, over two centuries after the fact, we still fail to reconcile<br />

the historical legacy of our national identity. As the common protest refrain<br />

goes: ‘white Australia has a black history’— yet the bedrock of white-settler<br />

Australian culture is rooted in longstanding denial and amnesia toward its<br />

Indigenous past. It is important to note the authoritative role museums,<br />

galleries, and art institutions play in interpreting and legitimizing contested<br />

histories, and to recognize the power they hold as gatekeepers of cultural<br />

production and knowledge. As purveyors of ‘official culture’, museums shape<br />

which – and how – histories are told and subsequently received by the public.<br />

The ‘white cube’ of elite cultural institutions often privilege a Western and<br />

Eurocentric history and lens onto the world. Colonialism, beyond its economic<br />

and socio-political manifestations, is perhaps most omnipresent within the<br />

realm of culture; as the decolonial theorist Ivan Muniz Reed writes: “so much of<br />

the modern world we know and experience has been constructed out of western<br />

imperial categories… the coloniality of knowledge is perhaps harder to discern<br />

and much more insidious to overcome.”<br />

It is important, then, that Sovereignty is conceived through a collaborative<br />

curatorial model, in partnership with the artist and curator Paola Bella, a<br />

Wemba-Wemba and Gunditjmara woman. In the words of Max Delany, the<br />

co-curator of Sovereignty and ACCA’s Artistic Director, it was a “curatorial<br />

process informed by First nation communities, knowledge, and cultural<br />

expression … structured around a set of practices and relationships in which<br />

art and society, community and family, history and politics are inextricably<br />

connected.” Sovereignty represents a new approach in curatorship and knowledge<br />

production: “a shift from authorial, institutional modes of exhibition-making<br />

towards more self-critical, consultative and collective models.” A curatorial<br />

practice that aims to challenge the legacy of colonialism must necessarily<br />

restructure and reinscribe prevailing discourses with alternative perspectives<br />

and narratives, replacing the hegemony of Eurocentric categories and standards<br />

with a form of “epistemic disobedience.” As Paola Balla herself states – “I<br />

am challenging working within the colonial institution, because I have a<br />

cultural and political responsibility to speak back whilst collaborating with<br />

non-indigenous practitioners.” ‘Speaking back’ to white Australia necessitates<br />

traversing across gendered and racial lines, to embody a politics of resistance<br />

whilst also celebrating and asserting the endurance and vitality of one’s<br />

own cultural identity. These artworks articulate resistance and survival,<br />

self-determination and autonomy, while also bearing witness to trauma and<br />

historical legacy – “art that tries to carve out a cultural space… to give form to<br />

that which is often unseen.” These two exhibitions can be seen as a corrective<br />

to the systemic and institutional absence of Indigenous representation in<br />

Australian arts culture, while also engaging with critical historical and political<br />

questions of our time. Sovereignty and Who’s Afraid of Colour? is a challenge to,<br />

and a disruption of, the ‘white cube’ of the gallery space.<br />

lot’s wife<br />

Sovereignty<br />

Australian Centre for<br />

Contemporary Art (ACCA)<br />

Curators: Paola Balla and Max<br />

Delany<br />

17 December 2016 – 26 March <strong>2017</strong><br />

Free Entry, Open 10/11am – 5pm daily<br />

(excluding Mondays)<br />

Who’s Afraid of Colour?<br />

NGV Australia, Federation<br />

Square<br />

Curator: Judith Ryan<br />

16 December 2016 – 17 April <strong>2017</strong><br />

Free Entry, Open 10am – 5pm daily<br />

“Despite being at the forefront of political,<br />

social, and cultural resistance, Indigenous<br />

women’s knowledge and practices are often<br />

omitted and rendered invisible in colonial<br />

academic, art and cultural institutions and<br />

public spaces… Aboriginal women speak back<br />

to white Australia through art and activism by<br />

naming trauma as a disruption of artistic terra<br />

nullius.”<br />

Paola Bella, Catalogue essay: Sovereignty:<br />

Inalienable and Intimate pg.12-13<br />

“In the gallery space and in cultural<br />

institutions, we situate ourselves to return the<br />

gaze with direct eye contact and a request that<br />

you listen to us deeply – whilst we attempt at the<br />

same time to subvert the process; to decolonise<br />

and to Indigenise the very places that have<br />

represented us through the colonial gaze.”<br />

Paola Bella, Catalogue essay: Sovereignty:<br />

Inalienable and Intimate pg.12-13<br />

“The Indigenous artist speaks truth to power<br />

simply by the fact of his or her existence…<br />

the power of presence unnerves some in white<br />

Australia. The autonomous Indigenous body,<br />

within a colonial ideology, should not be.”<br />

Tony Birch, Catalogue essay: Sovereignty:<br />

The Act Of Being pg. 17

I forgive you installation video<br />

On display at Who’s Afraid of Colour? NGV<br />

Kent Morris, Boonwurrung (St Kilda) – Rainbow Lorikeet, 2016<br />

On display at Sovereignty ACCA<br />

article & photography by linh thuy nguyen<br />

Sovereignty exhibition<br />

Kuruwarriyingathi Bijarrb Paula Paul, My Country, 2009<br />

On display at Who’s Afraid of Colour? NGV<br />

Miriam Charlie, Nancy Kidd inside her house, Garrwa One camp, 2015<br />

On display at Who’s Afraid of Colour? NGV<br />

Sovereignty exhibition<br />

Sovereignty exhibition<br />

Maree Clarke, Born of this land, 2016, installation video<br />

On display at Sovereignty ACCA<br />

arts/culture 42-43

Why We Love Migos And Other Songs About Nothing<br />

edition one<br />

“Rain drop. Drop top. Smokin’ on cookie in the hotbox.”<br />

So begins Bad and Boujee, an excellent song from Atlanta rap duo Migos that is about<br />

nothing.<br />

To be particular, the song is actually about “making money and spending time with<br />

women who have expensive taste” (thanks, Rap Genius), but realistically, the subject matter<br />

is entirely inconsequential to why Bad and Boujee occupies #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.<br />

The dearth of subject doesn’t mean by any stretch the song is bad. Offset’s chorus is<br />

intoxicatingly catchy and their handle on the triplet flow is untouchable. Metro Boomin<br />

could probably make a great beat while scuba diving and the bubbly Quavo oozes charisma.<br />

Nevertheless, this song is about nothing.<br />

Hip-hop has never been more ubiquitous in pop culture and strangely, it owes a great<br />

debt to songs of that seemingly spurn all conventions of the genre: thematically empty<br />

vessels that focus on aesthetic appeal, innovative sounds and creative musical directions.<br />

Bad and Boujee is the latest incarnation of that series, but the family tree is adding<br />

branches by the month: Panda, Black Beatles, Broccoli are all smash hits of the same<br />

genealogy whilst iSpy, You Was Right, I Ain’t Hiding and X flesh out the sound taking over the<br />

genre.<br />

None of the big hits succeeded conventionally. Panda had circulated for months without<br />

any buzz until Kanye West sampled the song on Pt. 2. Black Beatles went unnoticed before<br />

the viral Mannequin Challenge. Broccoli is just really, really goofy. Migos were popular, but<br />

their profile multiplied tenfold when Donald Glover praised Bad and Boujee at the Golden<br />

Globes.<br />

No one could have forecast the enduring success of any of these songs, but here we are.<br />

So how did songs about nothing come into vogue?<br />

The oft cited explanation is the considerable power of memes. Some would lump the<br />

aforementioned artists in with Bobby Shmurda, Silento and those who slingshot up the<br />

charts with a viral hit.<br />

However, meme-fuelled chart-toppers tend to disappear as soon as their one hit does.<br />

This group has some staying power: Black Beatles architects Rae Sremmurd have nine Top<br />

100 songs from two albums. Migos have drawn credible comparisons to the Beatles. Even<br />

Desiigner followed up Panda with New English, a good-not-great project that has kept him<br />

relevant a year later.<br />

A better explanation for this explosion of demand for songs like Bad and Boujee lies in the<br />

grim, combative political climate of the United States and beyond. Battered from a bruising<br />

eighteen months of divisive campaigning and widespread discontent, fun rap songs that<br />

don’t require much thought to engage hold unprecedented allure. Artists like Migos are<br />

accessible, apolitical and provide an appealing alternative universe of wealth and glory to<br />

substitute for whatever the real world is now.<br />

Those ingredients have always been in commercial hits but never before has hip-hop so<br />

transparently embraced these toothless apolitical earworms.<br />

To examine how quickly the landscape shifted, cast an eye back to the Best Rap Album<br />

field at the 2014 Grammys. Of the five nominees – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’s The Heist,<br />

Kendrick Lamar’s Good Kid, m.A.A.d City, Kanye West’s Yeezus, Jay Z’s Magna Carta… Holy Grail<br />

and Drake’s Nothing Was The Same – only Drake’s project could be objectively categorised as<br />

‘not political’.<br />

This year, the nominees all offer more escapism than they do commentary. In 2013, Kanye<br />

West was performing Black Skinhead on Saturday Night Live. In 2016, his most inflammatory<br />

lyrics centred around defending Bill Cosby and claiming to be the catalyst for Taylor Swift’s<br />

fame.<br />

Outside of the Grammys, the trend of de-politicisation in commercial rap is even more<br />

palpable. Budding critical darlings like Young Thug, 21 Savage, Lil Uzi Vert, Lil Yachty<br />

and Kodak Black are all incredibly talented, but never stray close to anything resembling<br />

politics.<br />

That reticence doesn’t detract from their utility as artists, but it distinguishes them from<br />

their predecessors. The runaway success of songs like Bad and Boujee suggests a shift in<br />

what hip-hop means to the masses: a fun genre that can be political, rather than a political<br />

genre that can be fun. It evolved beyond the radical protest of Public Enemy, the sneering<br />

Beastie Boys, the confrontational Death Row Records. Kanye, Jay Z, Drake and Eminem<br />

remain the genre’s biggest names, but after two decades of domination the genre is set for<br />

another creative revolution.<br />

Bad and Boujee helps crystalise what the next wave looks like. It’s the spritely new guard,<br />

armed with a breezy lust for life and a sound that demolishes the traditions of hip-hop. In<br />

an all-engulfing political nightmare, acts like Migos offer momentary respite that is clearly<br />

resonating with a massive audience. Fleeting as it may be, art that does that is worth its<br />

weight in gold.<br />

lot’s wife<br />

article by reece hooker

contributers:<br />

sam allen<br />

nick bugeja<br />

kelly simpson-bull<br />

natasha brennfleck<br />

menthol charlie<br />

rachelle lee<br />

lachlan liesfield<br />

sian davies<br />

agony aunt<br />

Creative/Comedy<br />

creative/comedy<br />


How To Be The Best ‘Modern Man’ You Can Be<br />

edition one<br />

Men. Lads. Fellas. Boys. Blokes. Mates. However you salute your fellow man. It feels like the pressure on us<br />

to be gentleman with the women and down at the pub with our mates is ever increasing. But of course, we are up<br />

to the challenge. After having mulled on what we have to do to conquer our critics, I wanted to help out blokes<br />

experiencing the same questions. This is how I wrote out this list, and reckon it’ll serve some of you well. Life is<br />

all about sticking up for your mates. Your mum, girlfriend, brothers and mates will thank you for sticking to these<br />

core principles.<br />

lot’s wife<br />

Shake hands with everybody<br />

Let’s be honest, there isn’t much better<br />

than a good handshake. Part and parcel of<br />

a good handshake is a firm, tight grip. The<br />

‘shake’ shouldn’t be brief. I estimate that<br />

the optimal time is about 7.8 seconds, and<br />

nothing less. It is a display of power and<br />

initiative. It’s even better if you initiate<br />

the handshake. Now, there can never be<br />

10.<br />

too many handshakes per day. I advise<br />

you to shake the hand of cab drivers, past<br />

classmates you haven’t seen for 10 years,<br />

and especially your girlfriend’s dad. It’ll be<br />

sure to impress them, and it’ll show the<br />

world your a man of action.<br />

Hang out in big groups of other men<br />

If you go out for a lads night, don’t go out<br />

08.<br />

with one or two of them. Go out with 8 or<br />

more of them. There’s no better sight down<br />

Swanston street on a Saturday night than<br />

a group of serious, ready-to-party blokes<br />

strutting down the street, taking up the<br />

whole path. The women won’t be able to<br />

resist – and that scrawny little guy walking<br />

home from playing ‘Pokemon Go’ will wish<br />

he was one of you. It is also imperative that<br />

you don’t waste your man-power. Make sure<br />

people know you’re in a group amongst your<br />

mates. Yell loudly, and talk over bystanders.<br />

Walk like you own the town.<br />

Always pay for everything<br />

09.<br />

Money is pretty sweet. It lets us buy<br />

Tommy Hilfiger clothes, grog and many<br />

other great male-orientated things. Money<br />

is power. That’s why when you go out on<br />

a date, you have to pay for everything,<br />

especially dinner and a movie (take ‘em to<br />

either Will Ferrell-esque comedies or Steven<br />

Seagal action movies). It sends a strong<br />

signal to your girl that you are that man<br />

able to take care of her. It doesn’t hurt to<br />

be kind, and maybe you’ll get something in<br />

return later. The same applies when you go<br />

out with your mates- always shout them for<br />

the first round. This shows them you’re an<br />

indispensable member of the group. Even<br />

better, you show them that you aren’t tight<br />

with money- a real show of power.<br />

Don’t be afraid to be stylish<br />

One of the best things about the<br />

07.<br />

evolution of being a man is that there’s no<br />

shame to pay attention to style. Having said<br />

that, though, be careful of these ‘hipsters’<br />

and never shop at Target. If you want to<br />

be a presence wherever you are, a good<br />

hairstyle is essential. Manbun, gelled-up<br />

hair, whatever suits you. A good Tommy or<br />

Ralphy shirt or polo is a must for any man<br />

serious about impressing his mates and the<br />

girls. Nice cologne (between $80 and $200)<br />

will only help your chances when your out<br />

there in the nightlife.

When you go out: dance, but not too<br />

vigorously and don’t act like you like it<br />

06.<br />

In the past, it was weak to go out and<br />

dance at nightclubs, but times have now<br />

changed. Beware, though, modulating your<br />

dancing is a key. Doing this will impress<br />

your mates, and even better, catch the eye<br />

of many beautiful ladies. In my experiences,<br />

I have found the finger-wag and controlled<br />

head movement to be pretty sweet dance<br />

moves out on the floor. It allows you to still<br />

scout out the women and the competition<br />

without seeming to ‘into’ emotion and the<br />

music playing. In fact, playing it cool is<br />

essential. Only when you are able to latch<br />

onto a girl dancing alone is it acceptable<br />

to get more serious about things. If you<br />

are lucky enough to find yourself in this<br />

situation, quick, abrupt dance moves will<br />

serve you well. Get especially close to the<br />

girl, ideally from behind.<br />

05.<br />

the bar is a powerful way of channelling<br />

article by nick bugeja<br />

illustration by kelly simpson-bull<br />

Stare at girls when you are trying to attract<br />

them<br />

With girls confidence is key. You have to<br />

show them, and yourself, that you mean<br />

business. The most effective way of getting<br />

the attention of a girl is strong eye contact.<br />

Staring relentlessly and without blinking is<br />

the most pure way to do this. Deliberately<br />

staring at a girl with her friends from across<br />

that you want her. Ideally, standing with<br />

your head slightly turned, staring, will give<br />

you a more handsome, manly profile that<br />

she won’t be able to resist.<br />

Stare at guys walking down the street to show<br />

them you mean business<br />

The staring ‘plan of attack’ also goes for<br />

other guys. Whether your by yourself or<br />

with mates, if you see another pack or a<br />

guy by himself a strong stare is a must. It<br />

shows your prey that you own the town,<br />

and lets them know not to mess with you.<br />

Even greater importance is attached to<br />

04.<br />

this if you are with your girl, as you need<br />

This is decidedly satire.<br />

to send a clear message for them to back<br />

right off. Once at Rats I was there with my<br />

missus and this guy walked up to her and<br />

whispered in her ear, asking her if she’d<br />

seen some movie Raging Buck. I stared<br />

at him the whole time and he fucked off.<br />

That’s what that staring does – it scares<br />

blokes off. Even if the bloke is on the other<br />

side of the road, make sure you meet his<br />

eyes with strong eye contact. It’s a sign of<br />

your position on the top of the food chain.<br />

Walk like you own the town.<br />

Take your sporting life seriously<br />

03.<br />

The sporting field is a great place where<br />

you can prove yourself a man. For whatever<br />

sport you play: cricket, footy, rugby, baseball<br />

(not netball unless there is girls on your<br />

team), it is a great place to show your<br />

physical superiority. This is important<br />

for any man’s psychology, and equally<br />

important to put down any man who is<br />

not at your level. For cricket, this can be<br />

achieved by bowling bouncers at 15-year-old<br />

kids, abusing the umpire, and tensing your<br />

biceps powerfully when you take a wicket.<br />

On Saturday night, discussion of your<br />

physical feats with your mates and female<br />

suitors is a great way to impress.<br />

Be the funniest and the centre of attention<br />

The best way to stand out and be<br />

remembered is to be the life of the party.<br />

Wearing clothes that exhibit your best<br />

physical features (usually biceps and pecks)<br />

goes some way, but being a comedian is<br />

probably the most foolproof way. These<br />

two things combined are irresistible. Some<br />

jokes guarantee to kill: anything Harambe-<br />

02.<br />

related, jokes about Trump, and jokes about<br />

you bashing clowns. Always make sure to<br />

dab.<br />

If you feel insecure or threatened, either try to<br />

belittle the person causing those feelings, or<br />

passively-aggressively play-fight with them<br />

(especially if girls are around)<br />

If theres ever a bloke questioning you,<br />

or trying to make out that you’re not a real<br />

man, DO NOT TAKE IT. If this is done in a<br />

social setting, do either one of two things:<br />

1a. Divert attention away from what was<br />

01. said about you by ruthlessly attacking the<br />

person making the allegation/attack the<br />

weakest bloke there. A hint of comedy in<br />

this is good to insert, but still make it clear<br />

you are ripping into their character. E.g. a<br />

good small-dick comment is reliable.<br />

1b. Play fighting with whoever talks shit<br />

about your manliness is a good way to<br />

reassert your male power. Act like you have<br />

taken it well and just want to engage in<br />

some fun male bonding, but underneath<br />

that try your best to hurt and injure the<br />

bloke without showing that you wanted to.<br />

People will just think that you are naturally<br />

strong if you do that. It is also a good way<br />

to release the anger that is surely eating<br />

away at you. The most important thing<br />

here is to make sure you’re manliness is not<br />

questioned. And if you react well, then it<br />

will get you a bit of silent praise from your<br />

mates and the girls will think that your<br />

above your mates and the man for her.<br />

creative/comedy 46-47

Love Affair With Cinque Terre<br />

edition one<br />

lot’s wife<br />

Images from the western coastline of Cinque Terre.<br />

Tash Brennfleck visited in September 2016 on a study abroad<br />

program with her visual arts degree. The images show the<br />

warm climate, crystal clear water, and other holiday-makers<br />

along the coast. Tash shares her photographs to show her<br />

beautiful experience along the coast of Italy.<br />

instagram: tsh_brn<br />

website: bbt-online.com.au

creative/comedy 48-49<br />

words & photography by natasha brennfleck

Burnt In Bali<br />

edition one<br />

No moisturiser,<br />

lot’s wife<br />

no drink<br />

and certainly<br />

no lawyer.<br />

The day after the Brexit vote I woke up in my suite on the<br />

bottom floor of the Komaneka Bisma – an expansive property<br />

on the edge of Ubud, a village in central Bali. As I woke up, I was<br />

greeted to a slow-burning pain all across my stomach and inner<br />

thighs, the previous day’s post-lunch lounge by the pool having<br />

left me with such severe sunburn that scores of empty Aloe Vera<br />

bottles lay sprawled around my bed. My journey to the shower<br />

proved difficult, pockets of green sludge unsteadied my footing and<br />

the burn had affected my quads so harshly that every step brought<br />

sharp and destabilising spasms.<br />

There is no question that I was duped into an elaborate joke by<br />

the staff at my hotel. I was told that the bottles of spray on each<br />

lounge chair side table was certified ‘Grade A’ 60+ SPF sunscreen.<br />

In hindsight they appear nothing more than the discarded oil from<br />

tuna cans. Where my wintery and pasty Melbournian skin suffered<br />

dearly under this ruse, the blonde wife of a Russian oligarch had<br />

profited greatly – on my balcony later that evening, over a quart of<br />

American Bourbon, she loudly illustrated the impending jealousy<br />

from her Moscovian sisters upon witnessing her tan. Playing the<br />

femme-fatale beautifully, she consoled me and suggested I sue the<br />

bastards for general damages. I sighed and explained I didn’t have<br />

access to a Balinese lawyer who specialised in these sorts of things.<br />

As I was reeling from the shock of my egregious overconfidence<br />

in the power of hotel-provided sunscreen, the world too was<br />

recovering in a similar manner from United Kingdom’s vote to get<br />

out of the EU. None of the King’s Court soothsayers anticipated<br />

such a decisive victory for the Leave camp, over a million votes<br />

favoured a Fractured Kingdom over a United Europe. What<br />

was framed by the Brexiteers as an opportunity to precipitate<br />

a renaissance of the United Kingdom, seems to have created<br />

the exact opposite result. Not that this consequence is entirely<br />

surprising either – the entire contemporary political narrative<br />

will be rewritten by this vote. The political elites have begun<br />

sharpening their knives for what is sure to be a grand feast at the<br />

political theatre. I imagine David Cameron, having lost the vote<br />

and ultimately his Prime Ministership, probably wasted no time in<br />

scouring his teledex for contacts in the Cobblestone Underbelly to<br />

survey his options for retribution. One hell of a sunburn.<br />

A call was forwarded to my room straight from the Labor Party<br />

HQ on Collins Street. The receptionist explained that they had<br />

reversed the charges and asked for permission to bill it to my room.<br />

Upon my loud and profane protestations, he put me on hold. This<br />

was the sort of penny-pinching tomfoolery that the Australian<br />

Left believe they can get away with. The xylophonic holding music<br />

finally ceased and I was told the call was urgent. He insisted that<br />

I accept the call. I agreed and told him to connect the call in 25<br />

seconds, on the condition that my caller be subjected to the holding<br />

melody at its maximum while they waited.<br />

I rushed over to the fridge and grabbed four dark miniatures to<br />

mix myself a drink; no doubt I was about to be swooned over by<br />

a secretarial hack and like shit I was going to allow it sober. The<br />

mystery caller turned out to be an old drinking buddy of mine from<br />

my brief stint at Melbourne University. We developed a habit of<br />

camping out at the craps table in the Mahogany Room in Packer’s<br />

Crown Casino all on our parents’ dollar, to begin revision for our<br />

politics exam, usually scheduled for the forthcoming afternoon.<br />

“Kim Carr, I should’ve guessed it! You fucking snake, where do<br />

you get the gall? No doubt extracted from the testicles of freshfaced<br />

Socialist-Left recruits?”<br />

“Jesus Charlie, you are in Bali aren’t you? I’m told this resort<br />

they’ve got you in is more luxurious than Bob Hawke’s bayside<br />

manor. You’ve got no good reason to be so strung out.”<br />

“Kim, ol’ darling, I know your kind don’t care much for private<br />

credit but this is some serious cheek. Charge it to the party!”<br />

“That’s why I’m calling.”<br />

“Ho ho! In a spot of trouble? Don’t tell me the wire’s going<br />

to read; Labor Heavyweight – in both figure and stature – uses<br />

campaign money to fund Bikie-run pooch nabbing scheme.”<br />

“No, no, we gave up on that enterprise in Oh Five. It’s much<br />

worse, our Accountant tells me Campaign Central has run dry, they<br />

mistakenly approved the printing of four million glossed pamphlets<br />

to be sent to each marginal household in Victoria. The order was<br />

irreversible and now we owe millions to some supplier in Ararat.”<br />

“Ararat? There’s no industry there Kim, only housing for<br />

paedophiles and tourists venturing into Western Victoria on poor<br />

intel. This sounds much worse indeed.”

“Don’t worry about that Charlie, Dreyfus has got his best lawyer<br />

on it. There are more immediate concerns. We’ve got about eight<br />

seats that are so close you could measure the margin on Danby’s<br />

dick, and without any more money we won’t just lose them to the<br />

Libs but also the op shop combing north-side seats to the Greens.”<br />

“Give up on em’ Kim, the bookies are saying Batman will be<br />

worse than Bennelong. Fuck that gaff-prone fool Feeney anyway,<br />

he deserves to lose to an academic. Cut him loose, redirect the<br />

volunteers, save yourselves some clams.”<br />

“This is bigger than Batman, Charlie!”<br />

“Time for the hard-ask. Hold the line Kim, lemme anaesthetise<br />

before you close the last stitch.” I ventured back over to the minibar<br />

to refill my drink.<br />

“I’m back Kim, go for it.”<br />

“Alright, I’ve already hit the Krauts, the Lebs, the St. Kevin’s<br />

crowd and even the Church but it’s not enough. They’re telling me<br />

a Porcine Magnate known to you has boarded himself up in Potts<br />

Point with a Polish dancing troupe, word is they’ve got enough<br />

cocaine on call to keep the Bolivian monopoly going for another<br />

few years, at least. This is the break we need Charlie, his secretary<br />

isn’t taking calls and you have his private cell number. The cash you<br />

secured for us in ‘04 kept the Victorian chapter alive, he seemed<br />

very-”<br />

“He’s turned his sails to the hard-right since then Kim, the<br />

prospects of a $50 billion tax cut bodes well in his circles. I doubt<br />

he’s willing to part with so much dirty cash in this political climate.<br />

We don’t know who’s going to win this fucking election. Bill’s run<br />

and Bus across Australia only succeeded in revealing his Keynsian<br />

leanings and its done well to alienate the Reinhart ilk. More budget<br />

deficits means less income tax cuts! He won’t give up the money<br />

Kim- no matter the ludicrous coke-to-blood ratio.”<br />

“Charlie, the Reds may be relegated to the campuses but the<br />

Greens are thriving in suburbs. If the ALP vote crashes through<br />

in this election we’ll lose all credibility and may never recover in<br />

Victoria. What happened in the UK this morning is a sign of things<br />

to come; the centrists are losing their shine. We’re entering an era<br />

of extreme promises and hard consequences. These new Millennials<br />

coming through are fucking the status quo, the game is changing<br />

and the ALP is still scrambling to figure out what the damned game<br />

is anymore. If you don’t get this injection for us the Greens will be<br />

the only seller on the market. Once they get hooked into the inner-<br />

North, Labor will never be welcomed back, believe me, friend.”<br />

“Every call I get from you Kim, only works to hammer in this<br />

perception that Australian politics is headed for crisis. The Dam is<br />

quickly reaching breaking point; it can only sustain so many gallons<br />

of blasted tripe before it bursts. I’ll give it some serious thought and<br />

get back to you this afternoon. Does Shorten known about this?”<br />

“This entire call is on his instruction.”<br />

“I’ll be in contact Kim.”<br />

I put down the phone with rancorous haste. His reply had deeply<br />

unnerved me. The hurried lighting of a cigarette on my balcony<br />

calmed my angst, but in that mix of smoke and humidity emerged<br />

rapid introspection. Bill Shorten had instructed the most senior<br />

left-wing Senator in Victoria to milk his contacts for an emergency<br />

slush-fund to save Labor’s vote from a fatal and awe-inspiring selfinduced<br />

wound. The immediate parallel to that morning’s Brexit<br />

vote astounded me. Cameron had used Western democracy’s most<br />

powerful structure-shifting mechanism (referendum) as a quick fix<br />

to quell party room dissent, only to fall on his sword spectacularly.<br />

Then, in Australia, the Labor party had taken advantage of a natural<br />

friend of the left, the environment, to not only wastefully produce<br />

tonnes of useless paper fucking pamphlets but to also squeeze dry<br />

the last drop of cash in Baby’s College Fund.<br />

A phone call such as this, then in that silence when the receiver<br />

touched its base revealed something that I had not known nor<br />

could escape. I am as pained by, but persist in the political apparat<br />

as I do my sunburn. A life-time membership to the Royal Australian<br />

Political Theatre grants the commentariat unparalleled privilege<br />

over other private citizens, a privilege that dooms me to watch<br />

empires collapse and see old friends turn dirty. Such a burden it is<br />

to trade secrets in this era of Murdochracy. But alas, it puts me by<br />

pools and sends me to the tropics.<br />

That’s all for now, Menthol Charlie.<br />

I’ve divided my advance towards the next issue<br />

with the diligence of an accomplished jurist. Half<br />

for Mint Juleps and the other for Ibogaine. No<br />

other pharmaceutical interaction could mimic<br />

the extractive capacity of a dreamcatcher so<br />

effectively. After all, the boorish editor of the<br />

Telegraph had the cajones to run a piece on Bill<br />

Shorten and a certain Gentleman’s club on King<br />

Street. This calls for serious reflection, especially<br />

because that motherfucking Labourist hasn’t<br />

squared our debt from that evening…<br />

article & photography by menthol charlie<br />

creative/comedy<br />


Going Home: A Cycle Of Self Discovery<br />

,<br />

edition one<br />

Some students know how it feels to re-locate to study and go back “home” over the<br />

holiday period, away from their new friends, partner(s) and Melbourne summer events<br />

and atmosphere. Whilst some travel for an hour or two by car others travel by plane for<br />

three or more hours. And still both struggle with existential questions, displacement,<br />

and the cyclical nature of living away from home to study. Although, whilst it all sounds<br />

serious, seeing family once (or more) a year is a pretty cathartic experience where you get<br />

to live like old times, where your housemates are your own flesh and blood.<br />

My existentialist side comes out to play only in Darwin, where I grew up and started to<br />

decide the kind of person I wanted to be. And with this, it is the place where I can no longer<br />

run away from answering the dreaded questions of “Who am I? Where am I going? And<br />

what am I doing?” which are common amongst uni students, especially during exam period<br />

and semester breaks. But there is something much more poignant about trying to find the<br />

answers in the place you grew up. And whilst I never have an answer for these questions,<br />

it’s the process of seemingly long stares at the ceiling, extensive journal writing and asking<br />

overly complex questions to my parents about what they did when they were young that<br />

bookends the end and beginning of my year. And every year my soul search spirals into a<br />

several day period of depression about how I became who I am, until I snap myself out of it<br />

to think about who I am, where I’m going, what I’m doing... until next year. I feel extremely<br />

lucky to have a home away from home and to get away from the intensity of Melbourne<br />

to a place that’s inhabited by nothing but crocodiles and grey nomads. I can explore my<br />

existentialism and reflect on the year past and the one ahead. However, it isn’t always a<br />

calm reflective time.<br />

Displacement feels inescapable when you’re living between two places. For me it feels like<br />

I have three separate lives that are all sewn together through my experiences in Darwin,<br />

and my memorabilia there. All with contrasting experiences, they feel disjointed and<br />

fragmented. I grew up in Melbourne where I engaged with the natural environment and<br />

walked home every day with my best friend through the most beautiful Sherbrooke forests<br />

and made new friends in my first years at high school. Then my family moved to Darwin<br />

displacement<br />

where I started all over again, making new friends, exploring new interests and wishing to<br />

return to Melbourne. Those years, of course, were stained with teenage angst. My current<br />

life in Melbourne feels like I’m returning to a reoccurring dream where everything is so<br />

also a strange hunch that they’re memories from a life that isn’t mine. My displacement<br />

feels<br />

stems from living away<br />

inescapable<br />

from family where we have a shared history for a great majority of<br />

my life. Where I am now, living an environment where I have a future, I’m still unsure<br />

whether I can confidently call two places my home – for remotely different reasons – but<br />

I’m willing to try.<br />

familiar but isn’t the same and not quite like how it used to be. Visiting where I used to<br />

grow up and my old friends there, I am engulfed in a wave of nostalgia and familiarity but<br />

The cycle of going back and forth between two places not only feeds into the idea of<br />

displacement – never really settling anywhere or feeling completely at peace – but also<br />

feeds the cycle of annual self-reflection. Every year the cycle continues to uncover personal<br />

growth, reflection and boundless possibilities. But will the concept of entropy ring true<br />

to the point where the regularity of my annual self-reflection will decline into a greater<br />

disorder and further disassociation with memory, and the feelings of displacement and<br />

fragmentation? Or will it, alternatively, become so regular, where the time spent away<br />

when youre<br />

from Melbourne no longer harbours the effects of personal reflection as the years go past?<br />

I honestly don’t know which I prefer but can feel slightly more at ease, knowing there are<br />

other students in the Monash community who face the same challenges of the cyclical<br />

nature of living away from home.<br />

I definitely feel I’ve grown as a person since the last time I visited Darwin but I can<br />

imagine I said this last year and will say it again next year. But I don’t know, it just feels like<br />

living between<br />

there’s something more to living away from home than just being in two places at different<br />

reasons.<br />

two places<br />

times of the year, in places that hold such personal relevance, for completely opposite<br />

lot’s wife

article by natasha brennfleck, artwork by rachelle lee<br />

creative/comedy<br />


MS Word Enjoys Itself<br />

Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh you’re reading this, are you?<br />

edition one<br />

Like properly? With words sounding off in your head and that tinny little voice going ringa-dinga-dinga if<br />

it sees it?<br />

Aha.<br />

Well, very nice then. Carry on.<br />

Oh, bugger you can’t. You need words to do that. Alright, alright just give me a minute and I’ll go and<br />

fetch them, yeah? Great, cheers.<br />

Oh, shit I’ve lost them.<br />

And they were bloody good I tell you, words so good you couldn’t even pronounce them, words like<br />

‘phendrenamultimatchimier’.<br />

But real.<br />

But just as equally unpronouncable. Even in that head of yours.<br />

You didn’t think much of that, did you?<br />

No, didn’t think you’d be impressed. You know what? It’s fine, I’ll take another look alright, I’ll find the<br />

words, just give me -<br />

Whoa,<br />

Hey,<br />

Alright, here, here, here, what about this fella:<br />

“In the same exacting perfection as before, she had not aged a day”<br />

Now that’s a bloody good one that is. True romance in written form. All served up to you on a silver platter.<br />

Silver page. Well, that bit of the page was, we had to make cutbacks somewhere.<br />

But, as I’m sure you can see, we are still a journal of the highest quality, indeed, I would doff my cap to<br />

you if I could, and wish you a good day. Indeed, I have, just like that, you see? Lovely.<br />

You’re still here.<br />

I told you, I lost the words, I didn’t even find those last ones, I just made them up myself. The real words<br />

are gone.<br />

I’m sorry.<br />

Here now, here now, don’t be sad you see, just, well look, look at that:<br />

That’s a proper illustration and all what you’re seeing there, not often we get them in such high quality in<br />

these parts, I tell ya. No, no it’s all plain text this, and formatting that, with no regard to the pleasure of<br />

one such as yourself, ya see.<br />

But that sorta thing is what you came here for innit? Alright then, try with me, come on, give it a shot,<br />

and<br />

3,<br />

2,<br />

1,<br />

And...<br />

Gah, thought that’d work, was hoping the words would find themselves, you see? Never have such luck<br />

I do, but I thought, maybe they’d come out for you.<br />

Come, come, lets try again, and -<br />

3,<br />

2,<br />

1,<br />

Butsincethoulovest,lovestillandthrivetherein,EvenasIwouldwhenItolovebegin”<br />

Bugger me, that all came gushing out at once, didn’t it? Ahaha, we did it, oh, I knew we could do it you<br />

and I, look at that, words on a page. Maker and muse, you and me. Maker and muse.<br />

That’s real beauty that is. What we made there. The words always come to ya eventually.<br />

lot’s wife

True, they did come out in a bit of a deluge, but, you know what, it’s fine, it’s fine, we’ll sort it out now, alright, you<br />

stuck with me this far let’s just, just see what we can get here with a little –<br />

“But since thou lovest, love still and thive therein, even as I would when I to love begin”<br />

Mhm,<br />

Mhm,<br />

That’s the stuff. See what we can do when we take our time to think before we read? Just gorgeous.<br />

But ere, I can do one better –<br />

“But since thou lovest, love still and thrive therein,<br />

Even as I would when I to love begin”<br />

Formatting, ten out of ten. Just makes it that bit more readable, yeah.<br />

Oh, oh, oh, I’m sorry, this is actually probably a bit boring for you, isn’t it? Here then, you give it a shot, let me read<br />

something of yours.<br />

Seriously.<br />

Just put it, umm<br />

Just put it here:<br />

article by lachlan liesfield, illustrations by sian davies<br />

Nope, nothing?<br />

Come on, don’t be shy, show me some words, take whatever space you need, here, here, here, just chuck it:<br />

Ah.<br />

I see the problem. Alright, silly me, that’s, yep, that one’s on me.<br />

Alright, alright, here, just for you then, to say sorry (you must be so embarrassed!) I’ll do something exciting, see:<br />

“But since thou lovest, love still and thrive therein,<br />

Even as I would when I to love begin”<br />

Yeah. I know you’re impressed. They don’t call it Impact for nothing, right?<br />

Hey, hey, more fun coming up:<br />

I may have got a bit excited.<br />

creative/comedy<br />


Wot’s Life? With Agony Aunt<br />

edition one<br />

Agony Aunt and friends will be here all<br />

year to answer your anonymous questions.<br />

Q.<br />

What happens when you die?<br />

You’re reborn as a bug for asking such a<br />

shit question. Or you go to heaven, or to hell.<br />

Or you just cease to exist. Or maybe you just<br />

live in an urn above a mantle?<br />

Personally, I’d say that it depends on your<br />

own beliefs and no one has come back from<br />

the dead to tell me otherwise.<br />

A.<br />

Q.<br />

I have feelings for my cousin. What<br />

should I do?<br />

You should transfer to the University of<br />

Tasmania.<br />

If anything progresses it is incest to<br />

conceive a child so I suggest you adopt. But<br />

in Australia apparently it’s legal to marry first<br />

cousins. So whatever, I guess it’s fine.<br />

A.<br />

lot’s wife<br />

Q.<br />

I am attracted to my co-worker and he<br />

asked me out to dinner but I’m pretty sure<br />

he has a girlfriend.<br />

Firstly you don’t seem convinced that he<br />

has a girlfriend so probably just confirm that<br />

it’s true. Talk to him up front and see what<br />

he says. Or ya know, stalk his Facebook<br />

and Instagram and the respective girl’s<br />

A. Facebook and Instagram just to confirm if<br />

he does indeed have a girlfriend.<br />

You could always casually slip it into<br />

conversation? But odds are if he asked you<br />

out on a date he’s keen and maybe he has an<br />

open relationship or something or maybe he<br />

just wants to be friends. I suggest you clarify<br />

with him before you get more involved.<br />

Q.<br />

Do you have any suggestions or tips for<br />

taking sexy photos? I am a 22 year old<br />

girl but I have never done it before. I have<br />

just started seeing a guy and I want him to<br />

know what he’s missing out on when we<br />

can’t see each other as we both have busy<br />

work schedules.<br />

A.<br />

Personally, I suggest you keep your face<br />

out of it because what if he turns out to be a<br />

twat and shows lots of people, ya know? Or<br />

alternatively just gather blackmail material<br />

on him and go wild with your photos.<br />

But I feel like you can’t really go wrong<br />

with taking sexy photos, you’re literally<br />

sending them a pic of your boobs, they’re<br />

not allowed to complain and they have to<br />

love it regardless.<br />

Q.<br />

Q.<br />

My friends don’t want full communism<br />

A.<br />

like I do. Please help.<br />

Find new friends, you don’t need people<br />

like that in your life.<br />

O - Week is the time to branch out and<br />

A.<br />

to make new friends so make sure you go<br />

to as many events as you can and befriend<br />

as many people as you can because who<br />

knows, maybe they want full communism<br />

too!<br />

Q.<br />

If I’m wearing a choker, does that mean<br />

I like anal?<br />

According to memes (the highest source<br />

of authority there is) yes, but I’d like to see<br />

the empirical evidence behind it.<br />

It probably just means that you like<br />

chokers and accessorising your neck to be<br />

frank.<br />

A.<br />

Q.<br />

On a scale of 1 to 10, how much does it<br />

hurt losing your virginity?<br />

Guess you’ll just have to try it to find out<br />

but we’ll say a 4.<br />

But in all seriousness, I doubt that the first<br />

time is great for anyone and if they say it<br />

is they’re probably a liar. So don’t fret, it’ll<br />

probably be over in 40 seconds anyway.<br />

A. Read a few Cosmo articles to prepare<br />

yourself, I find Cosmo to be enlightening!


The Women’s Department is seeking contributions<br />

from writers and artists identifying as or with<br />

women for our magazine;<br />


Please email submissions to msadissent17@gmail.com<br />

We look forward to hearing from you!<br />


Doors open from 9pm<br />

Lockout at 10pm<br />

$20 tickets<br />

Tickets available at monash.edu/summerfest<br />

or at the MSA Desk and Sir Johns Bar<br />

Full Moon Party is an 18+ event. Photo ID is required. Monash<br />

Student Association practices responsible service of alcohol.<br />



BBQ @ 12PM, buses @ 1pm<br />

Lemon Scented Lawns

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