19 June 2019

A few laughs

Political cartoons provide a few laughs but, of course, they serve a much greater purpose, to explain or comment on the news and events of the day. They can be uproariously funny, snidely cutting, embarrassingly illuminating. There are great cartoonists across the world and Australia is right up there. Perhaps it's a thing of the culture, but I prefer ours to most others. Except maybe New Scientist or The Economist or sometimes New Yorker. Cartoons also require that you know the topic. The National Library has a large collection of cartoons and I got to their exhibition called Inked. It's arranged in date order, so the early rooms are largely unknown and no understood, at least for me. For me, it starts at Whitlam, although there's some awareness back to Menzies. For others, earlier or later. For Labor Party animals, it's earlier. But I got a good few belly laughs from some of those displayed. But they can be black, too, like Best we forget or Progress. Here are a few. Sadly some other favourites didn't photograph well. Worth a visit to the NLA along with the annual display of best political cartoons downstairs at Old Parliament House.

Inked is a display of political cartoons at the National Library of Australia.

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