Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Feature: ''It's not the end of the world' for The Isthmus

Here's an apocalypse-themed fun piece I wrote for The Isthmus. What role do you play in end-times?
You can read it online here.

It's not the end of the world
By Anna Angel

I’m a big a Robert Frost fan as they come (at least, in any country where his poetry isn’t included in the national curriculum). I have his words tattooed on me, and I think he would have been a damn clever sort. But even I can admit his take on the apocalypse may have been a bit narrow.
Some say the world will end in fire;
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favour fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.
Robert Frost – ‘Fire and Ice’
Sure, there’s those who point the finger at fire, and ice hasn’t gotten off scot-free. But what about alien invasion, nuclear annihilation, the Rapture, Mayan prediction or freak cosmic accident? Luckily for the pessimistic and end-day curious amongst us, pop culture has picked up where Frost left off. In fact, we’ve become a little obsessed.

Feature: 'The Golden Era (terms and conditions apply)' for The Isthmus

Here's another piece I wrote in August for The Isthmus, discussing our cultural obsession with 'retro' in light of our actual past. I really enjoyed exploring the issues surrounding this one. 

You can read it online here.

The Golden Era (terms and conditions apply)

By Anna Angel
“You were definitely born in the wrong decade,” a friend says as if it is fact. Sure, I wear vintage clothing, collect retro oddities and have been seen at gigs doing the twist. But I couldn’t agree with rockabilly queen Imelda May when she told British press “the ‘50s were better in every way”. I’m grateful not to have grown up in Australia in the first half of the 20th century. Why? My childhood epilepsy – then widely misunderstood – would probably have landed me in a psychiatric institution, such as this one, for a lack of better treatment options, as might my struggles with anxiety and depression. While that’s an uncomfortable thought, prospects would have been positively bleak if I had of been Aboriginalgay or a non-European migrant. As morbidly hilarious as 1950s anti-gay propaganda and relics of the societal oppression of women may seem now, these were hardly ‘simpler’ times for many members of society. I set out to discover why we idealise elements of the past such as music, fashion and dinner table decorum and glaze over the glaring injustices.

Feature: 'Fear and Carbon in Canberra' for The Isthmus

In my final semester of uni I worked on a collection of articles for a new intelligent pop culture journal called The Isthmus, a project headed by Stephen Harrington. I also acted as online editor, subbing and workshopping all articles before publication. It was a fantastic experience and the team was made up almost exclusively of fun, creative pop culture enthusiasts. 

I've held off posting them until now because there's been a few kinks with the site meaning it never properly launched. I'm like a kid holding up finger painting: 'look, mummy, look what I did!' I just can't wait. 

So, here's a research/opinion piece I wrote in late July on the heated carbon tax debate - before it was passed. You can read it online here

Fear and Loathing in Canberra: a savage journey into the heart of Australian politics

By Anna Angel

There is nothing to fear but fear itself, except the pricing of carbon, that is. The debate over the proposed carbon tax has divided the nation like nothing since the introduction of the GST. Tony Abbott advised his party members to keep the argument ‘civil’ only moments before they called on a national rally in Canberra to “maintain the rage”. “We don’t want our country reduced to two warring camps,” he said.  Sorry, Tony, but it might be a little late for that. Rhetoric and commentary from both sides of the war on carbon have been nothing less than hysterical since the pricing scheme was introduced in July.  In this all-out screaming match, fear mongering is the favoured tack.  We are presented with an apparently impossible choice: implement the tax and our families will go hungry,

fail to do so and eventually, our families will go hungry. Whichever side of the fence you’re on, heavy spin from politicians and media alike aims to ensure you’re not left sitting on it.

Run, Rabbit Issue 1

This is what we made.
There's been a really positive response so far, and I'm so impressed with the contributions that came my way. What could be better than working with creative, inspiring people on an exciting and rewarding project?
Read all about it at
If you think you, or someone you know, might be interested in contributing to the next issue, here's what we're looking for: