By John Butcher
The Australian country is a piece in growth. So finish the authors whose perspectives are represented during this newest providing within the ANZSOG monograph sequence, Australia lower than development: Nation-building earlier, current and destiny. From its beginnings as a settler society via to offer day matters approximately ‘broadbanding the nation’, the nation-building narrative has resonated with Australians. The very thought of nation-building has either excited the preferred mind's eye approximately what we'd in attaining as a society and a country, and has occasioned depression approximately neglected possibilities. The 11 authors contributing to this monograph ponder those, and different subject matters from quite a few views. They problem our knowing of the time period ‘nation-building’, contemplate its modern relevance as a framework for public coverage or even re-appraise the contribution of earlier ‘iconic’ nation-building endeavours. To this topic the authors deliver intelligence, wit and a fit disdain for sacred cows. A stimulating learn for somebody attracted to the heritage, demanding situations and customers of nation-building in Australia.
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Extra info for Australia Under Construction: Nation-building Past, Present and Future (Australian and New Zealand School of Government (ANZSOG))
Indeed, one might have been justified in concluding that nation-building had been consigned to the status of an historical footnote. Every now and then, when someone promotes a grand — and sometimes silly — scheme to reverse the nation’s rivers, water its deserts or in some way profoundly transform its productive heartland, Australians sit up and take notice. Somehow nation-building is inextricably bound up with the ‘idea’ of Australia and still resonates in the popular consciousness. With the froth and bubble of a long election campaign now behind us it is prudent to ask whether nation-building is set to ‘re-surface’ as a contemporary policy and political discourse.
15 Such support was hardly unexpected. The urge to teach the ‘Australian Achievement’ in schools is a position that many Australians of varying political persuasions actively share. They see the role of history education is precisely to educate ‘tomorrow’s citizens’ about their national heritage and identity. It is the conduit for developing knowledge and pride in the nation and its past and any failure to connect with our national story is seen as a threat to the identity, strength and future of the nation itself.
I think I hear that bit of the story coming at us like a steam train in a tunnel. Here we are at the end. Of course, there are no metaphysical or historical guarantees. Still, I put it to you that the prospects for a resumption of constructive nation-building are better than they have been in a long while. Acknowledgements In preparing this chapter I have been greatly helped by several friends and dialogue partners. My thanks go to John Braithwaite, Tim Rouse, John Wanna, John Butcher, Adrian Fordham and Ian McAllister, among others.