Australian Identity Essay

1567 WordsApr 2, 20097 Pages
Australian identity, is an idea that is too big for anyone person to fully understand. Yet it is solely constructed from every small individual’s perception. In contrasting the Citizenship booklet, the government’s guide for future Australian citizens and True Blue? the anthology that “reminds us of our varied heritage” (True Blue?, 2008), it is evident that there are many versions of Australian identity. The two texts suggest that to generalise Australian culture and identity into one category is problematic. The question posed is whether Australia is a nation of migrants or the country of Anglo-Celtics? The land of freedom or the land of ‘white Australians’? The people of respect and understanding or the people of prejudice? There are many contradictions within what is perceived as the ideal Australian identity and the Australian values. Thus, a typical Australian is difficult to identify due to these conflict and challenges. The national identity and the values that are shared among society are founded in an individuals’ perception. These are ideas that are constructed by the shared collections of images, ideas, stories and traditions which are carefully selected by the individuals. Hence every single Australian has their very own version of Australian identity. However, the influences of one’s perception of Australian identity on others’ cannot be overlooked. The dominant idea of Australian identity has always been the “white Australian” version. Sadly, this is a result from the majority of the population being Anglo-Celtic plus the fact that the first settlers were from Britain. Consequently the typical idea of white Anglo-Celtic and Anglo European Australians appear in every single part of this land. In spite of this overwhelming impression though, in such a multicultural nation like Australia, the national identity cannot be simply determined by one’s

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