My dad has been substitute teaching at my old high school and today he emailed me photos of graffiti on this door.


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Some ideas are from kind of my fun and dark side. I like eyeballs and blood. For my “Pon Pon Pon” costume, my stylist was kind enough to put a lot of eyeballs on my pants.

fairmanrants said: i heartily commend you to get that blog piece you wrote published on The Conversation or some such outlet. Not that tumblr ain't rad.

cont:

oh, and i’m talking about the Australian nationhood piece, by the way. realise that last message was somewhat vague.

Thank you! A few other people have suggested similar things, and I am investigating my options in terms of fora interested in 2000 word navel-gazing thinkpieces on the subject of national identity. ;)

As The Conversation goes, however, I lack the academic qualifications to be published there.


In search of Australian nationhood

I don’t usually reblog my own things, but I was foolish enough to post this thing about Australian national identity at, like, 2 a.m. Sydney time, so here it is again.

screwrocknroll:

Nations are, by necessity, people united by common mythology. Sometimes that mythology arises from ethnic solidarity. Sometimes it is the product of a shared ideology. Others, as in the case of many post-colonial states, it derives from the mere legal fiction of internationally acknowledged boundaries. But nations do not exist without some kind of common purpose.

This is a problem that has particularly vexed the nations of the new world. Old world states define themselves in ethnic terms, and date the birth of their nation to the creation of their ethnic identity. This is the case with the French, the Russians, and the Japanese, and it is a conception of nationhood untroubled by sects who do not consider themselves bound by it, be they Basque, Chechan, or Ainu. The equivalence between nationhood and ethnicity is the reason why these societies have, in various ways, had such trouble adapting themselves to receiving immigrant inflows: if to be a French citizen is to be of Gallic heritage, what is one to make of French from North Africa or the near East? Should the nation continue to be ethnically defined, or can it find a new (excuse me) raison d’être?

The problem is both alleviated and compounded for states of the new world. The citizens of nations like the United States and Australia cannot with any awareness of history claim their nationhood derives from ethnic commonality. In such countries, settlers displaced, and now exist alongside, indigenous populations. Immigration has created culturally and racially pluralistic societies. There are not ethnic Australians the way there are ethnic Swedes or Thais or Greeks. Our nationhood cannot be defined by the forefathers of our citizens.

Being the first country to sever its ties with the British Empire, and having done so through armed rebellion, the United States was among the first modern society to consider this conundrum. Its determination, haltingly applied — through the inconstant expansion of citizenship and personhood to blacks, to its indigenous peoples, to immigrants — was that theirs was a nation founded upon an idea. To be American, unlike to be Portuguese or Dutch, is to find nationhood in the state’s civic religion, and especially, in the documents that express it: the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, the Constitution, the Emancipation Proclamation, among others.

Australia, since its inception, has faced a similar problem to the United States, but we have not so readily found a solution to the conundrum of our nationhood. We are clearly not an ethnically united population: our continent’s original inhabitants are Aboriginal; our numbers have included Irish since the 18th century and Chinese since the early 19th century. And yet we feel ourselves to be more than a legally defined entity: we are a people with a common culture, common ideals, and common patriotic symbols.

The United States found its identity in rebellion and, later, in internal conflict. Australia, however, has experienced no great unifying upheaval. Its birth was legalistic, not military. Edmund Barton is no George Washington. Indeed, the story of our nation has been one of the slow process of creating a nation. When we ask who we are, we are answering the question even while we pose it.

Read More


In search of Australian nationhood

Nations are, by necessity, people united by common mythology. Sometimes that mythology arises from ethnic solidarity. Sometimes it is the product of a shared ideology. Others, as in the case of many post-colonial states, it derives from the mere legal fiction of internationally acknowledged boundaries. But nations do not exist without some kind of common purpose.

This is a problem that has particularly vexed the nations of the new world. Old world states define themselves in ethnic terms, and date the birth of their nation to the creation of their ethnic identity. This is the case with the French, the Russians, and the Japanese, and it is a conception of nationhood untroubled by sects who do not consider themselves bound by it, be they Basque, Chechan, or Ainu. The equivalence between nationhood and ethnicity is the reason why these societies have, in various ways, had such trouble adapting themselves to receiving immigrant inflows: if to be a French citizen is to be of Gallic heritage, what is one to make of French from North Africa or the near East? Should the nation continue to be ethnically defined, or can it find a new (excuse me) raison d’être?

The problem is both alleviated and compounded for states of the new world. The citizens of nations like the United States and Australia cannot with any awareness of history claim their nationhood derives from ethnic commonality. In such countries, settlers displaced, and now exist alongside, indigenous populations. Immigration has created culturally and racially pluralistic societies. There are not ethnic Australians the way there are ethnic Swedes or Thais or Greeks. Our nationhood cannot be defined by the forefathers of our citizens.

Being the first country to sever its ties with the British Empire, and having done so through armed rebellion, the United States was among the first modern societies to consider this conundrum. Its determination, haltingly applied — through the inconstant expansion of citizenship and personhood to blacks, to its indigenous peoples, to immigrants — was that theirs was a nation founded upon an idea. To be American, unlike to be Portuguese or Dutch, is to find nationhood in the state’s civic religion, and especially, in the documents that express it: the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, the Constitution, the Emancipation Proclamation, among others.

Australia, since its inception, has faced a similar problem to the United States, but we have not so readily found a solution to the conundrum of our nationhood. We are clearly not an ethnically united population: our continent’s original inhabitants are Aboriginal; our numbers have included Irish since the 18th century and Chinese since the early 19th century. And yet we feel ourselves to be more than a legally defined entity: we are a people with a common culture, common ideals, and common patriotic symbols.

The United States found its identity in rebellion and, later, in internal conflict. Australia, however, has experienced no great unifying upheaval. Its birth was legalistic, not military. Edmund Barton is no George Washington. Indeed, the story of our nation has been one of the slow process of creating a nation. When we ask who we are, we are answering the question even while we pose it.

Read More


Prime Minister Paul Keating, February 27, 1992:

I was told that I did not learn respect at school. I learned one thing: I learned about self-respect and self-regard for Australia — not about some cultural cringe to a country which decided not to defend the Malayan peninsula, not to worry about Singapore and not to give us our troops back to keep ourselves free from Japanese domination. This was the country that you people wedded yourself to, and even as it walked out on you and joined the Common Market, you were still looking for your MBEs and your knighthoods, and all the rest of the regalia that comes with it. You would take Australia right back down the time tunnel to the cultural cringe where you have always come from.


So I don’t tend to post about Pony all that often because you guys don’t seem to like it much, but this episode revealed that Pinkie Pie’s sister is basically April Ludgate, and it was so excellent. “I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I don’t show my enthusiasm for things quite in the same way my sister does.”


Going to the MLB game in Sydney tomorrow; this new nail polish makes me think I should support the Dodgers, even if I did meet one of the D-backs on Wednesday night. He and I went to high school in the same town, about a year apart, which was both interesting and awkward. Nice guy though.
Not that it was ever necessary, but how glad am I Snoop and Wiz both got they nails did in about the same twelve month period as I started doing mine.
Anyways, yeah I generally buy cheap shit, but this is great? That’s two coats, and the second was hardly necessary.
I might do blue sparkles over the top for Sunday when I go to Kyary.

Going to the MLB game in Sydney tomorrow; this new nail polish makes me think I should support the Dodgers, even if I did meet one of the D-backs on Wednesday night. He and I went to high school in the same town, about a year apart, which was both interesting and awkward. Nice guy though.

Not that it was ever necessary, but how glad am I Snoop and Wiz both got they nails did in about the same twelve month period as I started doing mine.

Anyways, yeah I generally buy cheap shit, but this is great? That’s two coats, and the second was hardly necessary.

I might do blue sparkles over the top for Sunday when I go to Kyary.


Two things from JK Rowling’s History of the Quidditch World Cup essay

In 1971 the ICWQC appointed a new International Director, Australian wizard Royston Idlewind. An ex-player who had been part of his country’s World Cup-winning team of 1966, he was nevertheless a contentious choice for International Director due to his hard-line views on crowd control – a stance undoubtedly influenced by the many jinxes he had endured as Australia’s star Chaser. Idlewind’s statement that he considered the crowd ‘the only thing I don’t like about Quidditch’ did not endear him to fans. Their feelings turned to outright hostility when he proceeded to bring in a number of draconian regulations, the worst being a total ban on all wands from the stadium except those carried by ICWQC officials. Many fans threatened to boycott the 1974 World Cup in protest but as empty stands were Idlewind’s secret ambition, their strategy never stood a chance. The tournament duly commenced and while crowd turnout was reduced, the appearance of ‘Dissimulators’, an innovative new style of musical instrument, enlivened every match. These multi-colored tube-like objects emitted loud cries of support and puffs of smoke in national colors. As the tournament progressed, the Dissimulator craze grew, as did the crowds. By the time the Syria-Madagascar final arrived, the stands were packed with a record crowd of wizards, each carrying his or her own Dissimulator. Upon the appearance of Royston Idlewind in the box for dignitaries and high-ranking officials, a hundred thousand Dissimulators emitted loud raspberries and were transformed instantly into the wands they had been disguising all along. Humiliated by the mass flouting of his pet law, Royston Idlewind resigned instantly. Even the supporters of the losers, Madagascar, had something to celebrate during the rest of the long, raucous night.

  • Guys! Australia won the Qudditch World Cup in 1966! Aussie Aussie Aussie etc.

Possibly the most infamous World Cup Final of the last few centuries was the Ireland-Bulgaria match of 1994, which took place on Dartmoor, England. During the post-match celebrations of Ireland’s triumph there was an outbreak of unprecedented violence as supporters of Lord Voldemort attacked fellow wizards and captured and tortured local Muggles. For the first time in fourteen years, the Dark Mark appeared in the sky, which caused widespread alarm and resulted in many injuries among the crowd. The ICWQC censured the Ministry of Magic heavily after the event, judging that security arrangements had been inadequate given the known existence of a violent Pure-blood tendency in the United Kingdom. Royston Idlewind emerged briefly from retirement to give the following statement to the Daily Prophet: ‘a wand ban doesn’t look so stupid now, does it?’

  • This fits nicely in with my theory that in the Wizarding World, Britain is a rather backwards basket case of a country where open prejudice against muggle-borns is at least tacitly tolerated and the government is a mess of over-regulation and cronyism. Little wonder that it had two civil wars in the space of two decades. It might not quite be the Wizarding answer to North Korea, but something like the Wizarding answer to China. There was probably distinct concern in other countries about giving the 1994 World Cup to such a precariously run government, but Britain-boosters likely responded that this would encourage Britain to take its place amongst the world’s more responsible Wizarding nations. Obviously, the naysayers felt pretty smug when their predictions of disaster were fulfilled.


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