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Multiculturalism and Australian Identity: Issues in Society - Volume 408

Contemporary Australian society is a patchwork of cultural and ethnic diversity. Australians are largely embracing of multiculturalism and welcoming of those born overseas, however being ‘Australian’ can describe a broad range of characteristics, behaviours and attitudes. National identity and pride in being Australian regularly influence public debate in Australia, but they are not always clearly defined. How do Australians living in a multicultural society identify with their national identity, and how do they view themselves as citizens? This book examines Australia’s cultural diversity and the issue of social cohesion in light of its longstanding policy of multiculturalism. It also discusses a range of symbols and attitudes which define what it means to be Australian. Are multiculturalism and nationalism necessarily at odds?


Chapter 1 – Multiculturalism and Social Cohesion

  • Cultural diversity in Australia
  • What is multiculturalism?
  • Valuing multiculturalism
  • Australia’s multicultural policy
  • National social cohesion report reflects complex change
  • Multiculturalism and social cohesion
  • Building social cohesion
  • “Securitisation” presents challenges for migrant settlement and integration
  • How national multicultural legislation would strengthen Australian society
  • Multiculturalism and Australian identity
  • Australia’s multicultural future is a story in three parts

Chapter 2 – Discussing Australian Identity

  •  Australian attitudes towards national identity
  • Nationalism and patriotism
  • National colours
  • Australian national anthem
  • Australian national flag
  • A proposal for a new, mature Australian flag
  • Australia’s constitution works because it doesn’t define national identity
  • Australia Day: is nationalism really so bad?
  • A hybrid Australia, where identity has a multi-layered crunch
  • The day I don’t feel Australian? That would be Australia Day
  • Don’t deny our Australian identity
  • What does it mean to be an Australian and how has it changed?

Exploring issues – worksheets and activities

Glossary; Fast facts; Web links; Index


Multiculturalism and Australian Identity: Issues in Society - Volume 408

Author: Editor: Justin Healey

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