Books & Authors
Why we can't get enough of the Handmaid's Tale
Margaret Atwood and her crimson handmaids are having a big moment in popular culture and politics.
Margaret Atwood will be 80 in 2019. In an interview on social news website Reddit, she described herself as in the “gold watch and goodbye phase of my career.”...
Careless people of F Scott Fitzgerald's Great Gatsby have a modern equivalent
'THEY were careless people, Tom and Daisy - they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made.'F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby ...
The one they call the female Rushdie
If Nawal El Saadawi didn't write, she says, she might wield an axe instead. Sharon Verghis reports.
Nawal El Sadaawi is a woman of forthright views. In the hierarchy of world religions, Judaism is more oppressive to women than Islam, she declares. George W. Bush is "a right-wing fanatic" , Osama bin Laden's milder doppelganger. If blood spills in the global battle against international capitalism, so be it...
The hijacked spring
SULAYMAN al-Bassam, the Kuwait-based playwright, is in the middle of a passionate dissection of the US presidential election when our phone conversation is interrupted by three sharp electronic bleeps. ...
Haunted by the ghosts of good women with terrible tales to tell
Writing on the struggles of Chinese women has taken a heavy toll on Xinran Xue, writes Sharon Verghis.
Xinran Xue's sleep has been uneasy and ghost-filled since coming to Australia. She has dreamt of a fly gently tickling her skin, broken shoes and elegant Chinese ideograms, mothers and sons, floating worlds tethered by silk string. ...
Scholar Shereen El Feki storms sexual citadel of Arab world
FIVE years ago, Shereen El Feki set off on an extraordinary journey to chart the sexual topography of the Arab world. ...
Tahmima Anam’s Bones of Grace a carpet ride through Bangladesh
“What we do know is that the whale was first a coyote, then a water-curious amphibian, and finally, the creature that would rule the seas and become the stuff of our myth...
Craig Jurisevic: crossing the line
Craig Jurisevic, whe went to a war zone to treat the injured then joined the fighting, talks about his memoir, to be released this month....
Former Auschwitz prisoner tattooist's extraordinary tale of love and survival
Author Heather Morris tells Sharon Verghis how a meeting with an elderly Melbourne man led her to uncover the extraordinary survival story of the former prisoner tattooist of Auschwitz.
The frail old man sitting in his study in his Melbourne home opposite Heather Morris had a big secret to share – the keys which unlocked his story lay in the faded but legible strings of numbers inscribed in his arm: 32407...