Recalling the horror of Long Tan: ‘I was too bloody busy to be frightened’

The defining battle of the Vietnam war is now the subject of the film Danger Close. Harry Smith recalls the afternoon that changed his life If he dwells on it, Lt Col Harry Smith can still see, vividly, the blood on the trees on the enemys escape path. There was so much blood. In the days after the three savage hours that was the battle of Long Tan, his soldiers were finding body parts, carnage and corpses spread across the battlefield. But it was that blood, the blood of all the others that were dragged away, wounded, suffering, that affects him the most. That worries me more than a dead body. In the eerie silence, in the pervasive gloom, among …

I was a drug addict for nearly 20 years. There was nothing dignified or cool about it | Chris Fleming

I spent half my waking hours acquiring and using drugs and the other half trying to hide that fact Ive been an academic in the humanities now for almost 20 years, and so telling people that youre writing a book called On Drugs invites an inevitable series of nods, smirks and winks of jokes about doing empirical research in the area, of possibilities for applying for grants and getting funding. (While an addict, I would have certainly appreciated more funding.) One colleague, on hearing I was writing this book, joked that I should make up something juicy, like that I smoked crack, almost died and went through some fancy rehab. The fact, though I didnt say as much, was that …

Walking helped me discover the slow unfurling joy of reading books aloud | Patti Miller

On long treks through France, Spain and remote Australia, I discovered the rich wonder that comes from reading to a friend It began seven years ago in the hamlet of Ferreira in northern Spain. It was the sixth day of a long-distance walk and my feet had become increasingly sore. I sat outside the hostel, my feet up on a chair, feeling utterly dispirited. Ill read to you, said Anthony, my long-distance walking companion. Thatll fix you up. I was too tired to protest. Anthony hadnt read aloud to me before well, not more than a paragraph or two, which Id always felt as an imposition. I was too impatient for the slow pace of reading aloud. He pulled out …

What’s with all the wimpy, disappointing men on TV right now?

From Fleabag to Always Be My Maybe, the new wave of great female characters are getting such terrible love interests. Why? Theres a scene in the Netflix romcom Always Be My Maybe in which Sasha, Ali Wongs straight-talking, successful celebrity chef, watches her high school crush Marcus (Randall Park), a dope-smoking slacker who still lives with his dad in his mid-30s and plays in the same band he always did, bang out a song about tennis balls. Shes cheering wildly. A decade ago, this type of romantic setup would have contained all the chemistry of a bloated ShamWow. But this is 2019, and here the disappointing, underachieving male is not simply in a supporting role on TV, hes a proper …

Biden and Trump are just two sides of the same misogynistic coin | Arwa Mahdawi

Donald Trumps disdain for women manifests itself in crass braggadocio, while Joe Bidens is in the form of patronizing paternalism Sign up for the Week in Patriarchy, a newsletter on feminism and sexism sent every Saturday. other Democratic candidates, Biden announced he 2016 report by the Charlotte Lozier Institute, an anti-abortion organization, asserts that since 1976 the amendment is responsible for over two million births. The Hyde amendment hasnt just compelled women to give birth against their wishes; it has killed them. Bidens blithe avowal that there were sufficient monies and circumstances to help poor women access abortions in the past insults the memory of women like tried to prevent rape and incest exceptions from being added to it.) But …

‘Is this actually dance?’: Australia’s overlooked art form is its most exciting

Melbournes contemporary dance renaissance and a decade of Dance Massive festival go hand in hand Contemporary dance began for me in 2015, midway through a Tim Darbyshire show called Official statistics count it as one of the smaller and more specialised of the performing arts. Dance Massive, Australias largest festival of new contemporary dance, which turns 10 years old this year. Angela Conquet, the artistic director of Melbournes Alongside work by Joel Bray, Karul Projects and Marrugeku, the impressive DubaiKungkaMiyalk brings together a strong line-up of four contemporary choreographers, Mariaa Randall, Henrietta Baird, Carly Sheppard and Ngioka Bunda-Heath, curated by Randall, who is fresh from a well-received show at New Yorks Performance Space. Le Dernier Appel by Marrugeku is among …