Larrikinism is the name given to the Australian folk tradition of irreverence, mockery of authority and disregard for rigid norms of propriety. Larrikinism can also be associated with self-deprecating humour. According to the Macquarie Dictionary, 'larrikin' has two main uses: "a lout, a hoodlum" and "a mischievous young person".
The term larrikin was used to refer to "a mischievous or frolicsome youth", as reported in the Supplement, English Dialect Dictionary, editor J. Wright, 1898–1905. Lupikin, from Scottish Gaelic lubaiche is a word from the Cromarty Fisherfolk dialect, meaning scoundrel. 
Evolution of larrikin culture 
Commentators have noted the larrikin streak in Australian culture, and have theorised about its origins. Some say that larrikinism arose as a reaction to corrupt, arbitrary authority during Australia's days as a penal colony, or as a reaction to norms of propriety imposed by officials from Britain on the young country. The term was used to describe members of the Rocks Push – a criminal gang in The Rocks in Sydney during the late 19th and early 20th centuries - who were noted for their antisocial behaviour and gang-specific dress codes. An October 1947 editorial in the Australian Women's Weekly equated larrikinism with vandalism including arson, "They are the people who leave their picnic fires smouldering, and start blazes that deal the final blow to green loveliness", and defacing monuments, "A similar larrikin streak sends louts into city parks to shy stones at monuments and chip noses off statuary". In 1965 Australian swimmer, Dawn Fraser, was banned from competition by the Australian Swimming Union for various incidents at the previous year's Summer Olympics. Fraser was later described as having a "larrikin streak" as well as being an "iconic figure" and was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 1988.
Melissa Bellanta describes the evolution of larrikinsim in Australia in her book, Larrikins: A History:
Today, being a larrikin has positive connotations and we think of it as the key to unlocking the Australian identity: a bloke who refuses to stand on ceremony and is a bit of scally wag. When it first emerged around 1870, however, larrikin was a term of abuse, used to describe teenage, working-class hell-raisers who populated dance halls and cheap theatres. Crucially, the early larrikins were female as well as male.—Melissa Bellanta, Larrikins: A History (2012)
Larrikinism is a significant element in Australian culture, and has emerged repeatedly, influencing Australian contemporary art, popular and youth culture and political debate. Evidence of the larrikin influence includes traditions of free, rule-defying experimentalism in Australian art and underground music (various renowned experimental ensembles that emerged from the post punk movement are examples).
It can be argued that the larrikin tradition of disdain for authority, propriety and the often conservative norms of bourgeois Australia (as evident, for example, in the country's history of censorship and the nation's receptiveness to paternalistic leaders) are two sides of a self-reinforcing dynamic; the social conservatism of the mainstream fuels the undercurrent of larrikinism and rebellion, which, in turn, is seen as demonstrating that a firm hand is needed. This is sometimes referred to as the "larrikin-wowser nexus", "wowser" being an Australian colloquial term for a person of puritanical mores.
A person may be classified as a larrikin if he or she meets some of these criteria. A larrikin is not concerned with the opinion of other people and so is not socially intimidated into modifying behaviour and structuring it around social norms. Larrikins are also not at all fazed by authorities of all kinds, including whatever power or authority they may possess themselves, and must not take themselves too seriously. Australia's "Pace e Bene" blog has suggested that Jesus be considered a larrikin, for his non-conformity. For the preceding two reasons, someone like the deceased Australian media magnate Kerry Packer may not have been a larrikin as he took his own power and authority, as well as that of other media companies and the government, seriously. But his personality might have seen him classified as a larrikin were he not wealthy and influential. Some notable larrikins are listed below, however not all satisfy each criterion.[original research?]
18th and 19th century larrikins 
20th century larrikins 
- Dawn Fraser, swimmer
- Ken Fletcher, tennis player
- Bob Hawke, prime minister
- Neil Hawke, cricketer
- Paul Hogan, actor
- Barry Humphries, aka Dame Edna Everage, actor
- Mick Molloy, comedian
- Bon Scott, lead singer AC-DC
- Graham Kennedy, television presenter
- Tex Perkins, singer-songwriter
- Shane Warne, cricketer
- Kevin Bloody Wilson, singer-songwriter
21st century larrikins 
- Dave Hughes, Australian stand-up comedian, and a radio and television presenter
- The Chaser, Australian comedy troupe
- Merrick and Rosso, Australian comedy duo
- TISM, Australian band
- Hamish and Andy, Australian comedy duo
- Brendan Fevola, Australian footballer
- Sam Newman, former footballer and media personality
Larrikins in literature 
- Jonah by Louis Stone (1911)
- The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke by C.J. Dennis (1915)
- The Moods of Ginger Mick by C.J. Dennis (1916)
See also 
- hyperdictionary.com entry
- Delbridge, A (ed.). Budget Macquarie. McMahons Point, NSW: Macquarie Library. p. 376. ISBN 0-949757-01-2.
- See p. 667 Volume VIII The Oxford English Dictionary. Clarendon Press, Oxford, England. 2000.
- Gorman, Clem (1990), The Larrikin streak : Australian writers look at the legend, South Melbourne, Vic: Sun Books, ISBN 978-0-7251-0628-7
- "The Labour Bureau.". Queanbeyan Age (NSW : 1867 - 1904) (National Library of Australia). 27 February 1892. p. 3. Retrieved 28 February 2013. "Work went on satisfacturily for a time, but in the afternoon a horde of larrikins, known as the 'Rocks push', annoyed and interrupted the men by calling them blacklegs. The larrikins did not stop at using abusive epithets, but even resorted to violence, with the result that one man was so severely injured that he had to be conveyed to the Sydney Hospital.".
- "Celebrating the original larrikin"
- Larrikin Convicts
- "Editorial.". The Australian Women's Weekly (1933 - 1982) (1933 - 1982: National Library of Australia). 18 October 1947. p. 18. Retrieved 27 February 2013.
- Heywood, Anne (5 September 2012). "Fraser, Dawn (1937 - )". The Australian Women's Register. The National Foundation for Australian Women (NFAW). University of Melbourne. Retrieved 27 February 2013. Text " Henningham " ignored (help)
- Bellanta, Melissa (2012), Larrikins: A History, St Lucia, Qld: University of Queensland Press, ISBN 978-0-7022-3912-0, "From the true-blue Crocodile Hunter to the blue humour of Stiffy and Mo, from the Beaconsfield miners to The Sentimental Bloke, Australia has often been said to possess a 'larrikin streak'. Today, being a larrikin has positive connotations and we think of it as the key to unlocking the Australian identity: a bloke who refuses to stand on ceremony and is a bit of a scallywag. When it first emerged around 1870, however, larrikin was a term of abuse, used to describe teenage, working-class hell-raisers who populated dance halls and cheap theatres. Crucially, the early larrikins were female as well as male. Larrikins: A History takes a trip through the street-based youth sub-culture known as larrikinism between 1870 and 1920. Swerving through the streets of Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney, it offers a glimpse into the lives of Australia's first larrikins, including bare knuckle-fighting, football-barracking, and knicker-flashing teenage girls. Along the way, it reveals much that is unexpected about the development of Australia's larrikin streak to present fascinating historical perspectives on hot 'youth issues' today, including gang violence, racist riots, and raunch culture among adolescent girls".
- Larrikin's Hop & blackface minstrelsy
- pace e bene blog