This special topic course introduced students to the society and culture of Australia and its people.
Utilising historical and contemporary examples of art forms including painting, poetry, film, novels and music, the course offered the perspective of one individual Australian on what defines Australia in the modern world.
Topics considered included relations between indigenous Australia and settler/invader cultures, the formation of particular Australian identities through warfare, current threats to Australia’s unique environment, Australian attitudes towards Asia, the role of sporting heroes in Australian culture, the figure of the renegade or outlaw in colonial literature, the development of a national youth culture in the 1990s, Australian poetry and globalisation, the history of democracy in Australia, the role of religion in contemporary Australian politics and Australia’s relationship with the United States.
Classes utilised a mixture of written materials, audiovisual presentations and film.
Assessment consisted of one short essay as well as group presentations on a topic related to one of the topics discussed in the course.
Administration & expectations
GLOSSARY OF AUSTRALIAN TERMS
Relations between indigenous Australia and invader cultures
Captain Cook & Terra Nullius
Questioning National Identities
The formation of Australian identities through warfare
Australians at War
The ANZAC legend
Japan, Korea and Vietnam
Threats to Australia ‘s unique environment
Pastoralism, Mining and Tourism
City vs Bush
Australian attitudes towards Asia
Aboriginal relations with Asia
The Gold Rush, Federation and Xenophobia
The role of sporting heroes in Australian culture
Three heroes: Don Bradman, Evonne Goolagong and Phar Lap
National Pride and the Olympics
NO CLASSES – first ASSESSMENT
The figure of the renegade or outlaw in Australian culture
Freedom fighters and convicts
Three Perspectives on Ned Kelly
Renegade on film: Crocodile Dundee
The Ern Malley hoax
Australian culture and music since the 1990s
Moving on from the 1980s
Living with diversity
The emergence of an Australian youth culture
Contemporary Australian politics
Democracy, Religion & Politics
Neo-liberalism & globalization