The Monthly is an Australian national magazine of politics, society and the arts, which is published eleven times per year on a monthly basis except the December/January issue. Founded in 2005, it is published by Melbourne property developer Morry Schwartz. The publisher is also director of Black Inc., which publishes non-fiction books, the political journal Quarterly Essay, and The Saturday Paper, a weekly long-form newspaper.
Contributors have included Mark Aarons, Waleed Aly, John Birmingham, Peter Conrad, Annabel Crabb, Richard Flanagan, Robert Forster, Anna Funder, Helen Garner, Kerryn Goldsworthy, Ramachandra Guha, Gideon Haigh, M. J. Hyland, Clive James, Kate Jennings, Paul Kelly, Benjamin Law, Amanda Lohrey, Mungo MacCallum, Shane Maloney, Robert Manne, David Marr, Maxine McKew, Drusilla Modjeska, Peter Robb, Kevin Rudd, Margaret Simons, Tim Soutphommasane, Lindsay Tanner, Malcolm Turnbull and Don Watson.
The magazine generally publishes essays 3,000 to 6,000 words long. The cover stories "Being There", Mark McKenna's investigation of key Australian historian Manning Clark, and Wendi Deng Murdoch, Eric Ellis's profile of the wife of media mogul Rupert Murdoch were around 10,000 words long.
Early in 2006, The Monthly published "Information Idol: How Google is making us stupid" by Gideon Haigh and "The Tall Man: Palm Island's Heart of Darkness" by Chloe Hooper. Both pieces shared the 2006 John Curtin Prize for Journalism. Hooper's piece went on to win the 2006 Walkley Award for Magazine Feature Writing.
The Monthly has published in-depth essays that have impacted on Australian politics and politicians. "The Outcast of Camp Echo: The Punishment of David Hicks" by Alfred W. McCoy, "Faith in Politics" by Kevin Rudd, and "Gunns: Out of Control" by Richard Flanagan have given wider attention to the issues raised beyond the readership of the magazine.
50,000 copies of the essay "Gunns: Out of Control" were reprinted for letterboxing in the electorates of Australia's environment minister and opposition environment spokesperson by businessman Geoffrey Cousins who decided to mount a campaign against the proposed Bell Bay Pulp Mill in Tasmania after reading it in The Monthly.
The Monthly contains an Arts and Letters section with independent reviews on books, film, music, theatre, TV, fashion, art and architecture. Regular contributor, Robert Forster won the 2006 Pascall Prize for Critical Writing for his popular music criticism in The Monthly.
A section at the front of the magazine consisting of a national round-up in a handful of articles, each around 1,000 words. This section is an acknowledgment to the former businessman Gordon Barton who founded a weekly newspaper titled Nation Review.
At the back of the magazine there was a one-page story recalling an unlikely but real historical meeting between two famous individuals, for example "Errol Flynn & Fidel Castro". Encounters was written by Shane Maloney and illustrated by Chris Grosz and was published as a collection in August 2011 by Black Inc.