Talk:Culture of Australia

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culture cringe section moved here[edit]

moved this section from the article, it needs a major npov-ing and a rewrite for encyclopedic tone, it currently reads like personal observations or an essay (like much of this "schools of thought" section) and should be merged into the more general earlier discussion: clarkk 15:48, 21 Mar 2005 (UTC)

The Cultural Cringe
Many foreigners, as well as many Australians, make fun of Australian Culture, and joke that the term itself is an oxymoron. This is not helped by the huge success of TV shows such as Neighbours and The Crocodile Hunter, which are more popular in the US and the UK than they are at home. Many Australians suffer from a cultural inferiority complex, and whenever a celebrity makes it big overseas, like Nicole Kidman or Mel Gibson, the Australian media make a big fuss over how they have achieved international fame and celebrity, as if that somehow validates Australian culture in general. It is almost as if many Australians fantasise that an American or Brit will see a Nicole Kidman movie and think to themselves "Gee that Nicole's a pretty good actress, maybe Australia's not such a cultural wasteland after all."
first cut at rewrite clarkk 16:19, 21 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Some commentators have noted the presence of a so-called "cultural cringe" in which some Australians have become reflexively ashamed of some of their cultural exports, and question the existence of the notion of an Australian "culture". These commentators point to the success of television programs such as Neighbours and The Crocodile Hunter, which have often become more popular outside Australia than locally, as evidence of this trend. Others point out that although Australia has several high profile exports such as Nicole Kidman and Mel Gibson, that Australian artists have become influential globally in the arts, music and entertainment, albeit in less financially lucrative or mainstream areas. Examples of these cited include The Necks in jazz, electronic music pioneers, Severed Heads amongst others. It is often the case that less mainstream artists have had to market and/or relocate overseas to gain traction, however, this may be due to the nature of the smaller Australian market than lesser intrinsic support for cultural endeavours.

Yes I agree it needs a re-write and think your version is a good start. However I have never heard of either The Necks or Severed Heads so I'm not sure if these are good examples of influential Australian musicians. Also the "cultural cringe" is not just about Australians being "ashamed" of some of our cultural exports although that is definitely part of it. It is more about Australians wanting to be seen as sophisticated and respected by other nations, especially Europeans and Americans. When someone like Steve Irwin becomes successful we "cringe" at this broad Ocker stereotype (even though Irwin is only being himself!). We prefer to have someone like Nicole Kidman or Geoffrey Rush as our cultural ambassadors, because they are sophisticated and classy (the opposite of Irwin). This is particularly evident in the way in which the Australian media reports events like the Olympics and the Oscars, where the only focus seems to be whether the Aussies are winning. Unfortunately being new at this I don't know how to say this in a NPOV and encyclopaedic tone. --Jasper 22:56, 21 Mar 2005 (UTC)


While I agree that mention of the ABC has a lot to do with Australian culture, I don't think you are proving your point here.

"Debate about the role of the ABC continues, as many assign it a marginal role, and claim that American-influenced commercial TV and radio stations are far more popular choices. These critics claim that Australian children grow up watching Sesame Street and The Simpsons, eating fries at McDonald's, wearing baseball caps, speaking American slang, and some have never heard of Blinky Bill or the Magic Pudding. Television ratings are cited as backing this view, but it is less clear that these ratings tell the whole view."

I believe that Sesame Street is shown on the ABC. I know that you are trying to make a point about the Americanisation of Australian culture but don't you think that this belongs in it's own paragraph rather that in a paragraph devoted to the ABC?


The introduction to this article is far, far too long. Should sentences be simply removed or..? - Stonemaccas 18 September

Review please[edit]

Removed section on Australian identity due to its bias tone.