“All men should strive to learn before they die, what they are running from, and to, and why.” – James Thurber

About Julian Burnside

Julian Burnside AO QC is an Australian barrister who practices principally in commercial litigation, trade practises and administrative law. He is also a human rights and refugee advocate, and author. Julian stood as a candidate for the Greens in his local electorate of Kooyong in the 2019 federal election.

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Ruth Bader Ginsburg

This is the text of a speech I gave for Agora ( a Cypress-based organisation) in October 2021 Early life and education Ruth Bader Ginsburg was born on March 15, 1933, to Jewish parents with Eastern European roots: Her father (Nathan Bader) was a furrier from the... read more

Obscene Words

(the article below is one of the chapters in my book Word Watching (published by Scribe).  But beware, this article contains some words and ideas which will shock some people. Word Watching contains 48 essays about aspects of language.  Of course, I recommend that you... read more

What Next?

Australia is in an interesting position, right now. An election is due during the next 10 months; the government is daily embarrassed by the plight of the Sri Lankan family from Biloela (but currently held on Christmas Island). The Sri Lankan family from Biloela,... read more

Why does art matter?

23 February 2021 Economic rationalists would point out that most artists are economically unviable.  That is true, unfortunately.  Creative artists generally have miserable incomes from their art, and survive by teaching or waiting on tables.  Performing artists do... read more

Quotations

The redoubtable (but flawed) F.E. Smith (1872-1930) was the subject of a few biographies: FE (hagiography, by his son); Lord Birkenhead by ‘Ephesian’ (Bechofer Roberts); The Glittering Prizes by William Camp – distinctly not hagiography.  Incidentally, the phrase ‘the... read more

Donald J Trump

This is a very good piece written by Australian author Mike Richards: It deals with him by the letters of his name, which is NOT to say he is a man of letters. Donald J Trump, by Mike Richards The essence of Donald Trump’s political personality is actually beyond... read more

Does Art Matter

Does art matter?  Does culture matter?  It is tempting to say that our belief in these things is a matter of faith: it is axiomatic – we assume as a first principle that art matters, and we use this assumption as a starting point for arguments about philanthropic... read more

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Videos

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