Over the last century and a half the competing merits of withdrawal from and connection to Asia-and the related vocabularies of separation and engagement-have been defining themes in Australian history. Experiencing Turbulence brings together a selection of publications on Australian representation of Asia, published in various journals and books in the last ten years that follow the publication of Anxious Nation: Australia and the Rise of Asia, 1850 to 1939. Collectively they address key themes in the Australian response to Asia: survivalist anxieties, climate and race, population and immigration, empty Australia, gender and bush mythologies, and regional Identities. These essays reveal the central, often constitutive role that Asia has played in the formation of ideas of nation and identity in Australia from the late nineteenth century to the present. The collection underlines the often unpredictable character of engagement and the fluid nature of fear and fascination, proximity and distance in the Australia-Asia relationship. With the recent publication of a government White Paper on Australia in the Asian Century there is a new determination to persuade Australians that "rising Asia," turbulent though it may be, is an opportunity for Australia more than it is a threat.
Field of Research
210303 Australian History (excl Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander History)
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