Event: Identity—Yours, Mine, Ours at Immigration Museum.

 

It’s not often an exhibition is created based on racism in Australia.

Either we ignore it, or we sport t-shirts and bumper stickers saying “Fuck off, we’re full”.

Well, a groundbreaking new exhibition at the Immigration Museum on Flinders Street has changed that, entitled Identity: Yours, Mine, Ours, part of general admission ($10 for adults, free for concession and children).

The first part of the exhibition deals with preconceived notions about people based on what they look like, what they wear, which cultural groups they (seemingly belong to), amongst other factors. While the exhibition has been designed with the utmost involvement with those who are featured in it (Kat Clarke, the Indigenous, hoodie-wearing teen poet and songwriter, for example), it’s the second half that really piqued my interest.

It begins with a simulated tram ride in which a white businessman hops on and expresses disdain and what can only be described as covert racism to an African man speaking in his native dialect on the phone.

There are then depictions of the abovementioned “Fuck off, we’re full” t-shirts, which leads into a timeline of racism and discrimination in Australia and around the world. There’s a lot of reading in this section, so my advice is to allow at least an hour and a half for the exhibition, and don’t take a heavy bag!

Towards the end there are displays of discriminatory and downright racist toys and food, such as golliwogs and Creole cream biscuits. Even Gwen Stefani’s range of L.A.M.B. perfumes are called into question! There are also videos of Pauline Hanson’s 1996 maiden speech and Kevin Rudd saying “sorry” to the Stolen Generations in February 2008.

A lot of complementary content can be found on the Identity website and blog.

I’m not sure how long it’s on for, but if you’ve got a spare $10 and a couple of hours, a visit is well worth it for the novel experience of an exhibition based on racism in Australia. In this day and age, it’s sad it is so novel…

Elsewhere: [Immigration Museum] Identity: Yours, Mine, Ours.

[Immigration Museum] Identity Blog.

UPDATED: Julian Assange—Modern Day Outlaw.

 

From The Curvature via Musings of an Inappropriate Woman:

“I am SO SICK today of people who can’t see that:

1) WikiLeaks is important and does good work;

2) Julian Assange may be a rapist;

and

3) The pursuit by the authorities for the rape charges may be motivated as much by WikiLeaks as by a desire to see justice done are not in any way contradictory positions and could all be simultaneously true.”

Also check out Rachel Hills’ further musings on WikiLeaks and Assange here.

And for some more opinions on WikiLeaks, visit MamaMia for Mia Freedman’s compilation of the most poignant, as well as her own admission of jumping to conclusions and maybe not articulating her views as well as she could have.

And here is my original post, published last week:

The Australian founder of whistleblower website Wikileaks, Julian Assange, has handed himself over to police today on “undisclosed sexual assault charges” (allegedly rape, which was then changed to having consensual sex with two women whilst claiming to have worm a condom, but didn’t).

He does have a certain creepy quality to him which makes me think it’s not unlikely he’s committed these crimes, but is that really the issue?

More than likely, these charges have been fabricated to get him behind bars, thus stopping him from publishing more confidential government documents and damaging international relations.

Do we really need to know that the U.S. thinks Kevin Rudd is an “abrasive control freak” or the common perception of world leaders such as Hillary Clinton or French president Nicolas Sarkozy? Most of the stories published in the mainstream media about Wikileaks doesn’t indicate many imperative top secret documents (related to terrorism, nuclear weapons etc.) that the general public arguably has a right to know have been leaked. Obviously there are larger issues at hand: Assange is a threat to global governments.

But here in Australia, Assange’s home country, he is viewed as a hero. Somewhat of a modern day Ned Kelly, if you will. Aussie’s appreciate an underdog sticking it to the man, so despite what his website has published, I think most Australian’s are probably rooting for him.

Elsewhere: [The Curvature] I Am So Sick of People Who Can’t See That…

[Musings of an Inappropriate Woman] I Am So Sick of People Who Can’t See That…

[Musings of an Inappropriate Woman] Quick Thoughts on Julian Assange, WikiLeaks & Those Rape Allegations.

[MamaMia] WikiLeaks: Some Food for Thought.

[MamaMia] Updated: Are WikiLeaks & Julian Assange Forces of Good or a Dangerous Menace?

Julian Assange—Modern Day Outlaw.

 

The Australian founder of whistleblower website Wikileaks, Julian Assange, has handed himself over to police today on “undisclosed sexual assault charges” (allegedly rape, which was then changed to having consensual sex with two women whilst claiming to have worm a condom, but didn’t).

He does have a certain creepy quality to him which makes me think it’s not unlikely he’s committed these crimes, but is that really the issue?

More than likely, these charges have been fabricated to get him behind bars, thus stopping him from publishing more confidential government documents and damaging international relations.

Do we really need to know that the U.S. thinks Kevin Rudd is an “abrasive control freak” or the common perception of world leaders such as Hillary Clinton or French president Nicolas Sarkozy? Most of the stories published in the mainstream media about Wikileaks doesn’t indicate many imperative top secret documents (related to terrorism, nuclear weapons etc.) that the general public arguably has a right to know have been leaked. Obviously there are larger issues at hand: Assange is a threat to global governments.

But here in Australia, Assange’s home country, he is viewed as a hero. Somewhat of a modern day Ned Kelly, if you will. Aussie’s appreciate an underdog sticking it to the man, so despite what his website has published, I think most Australian’s are probably rooting for him.

On the (Rest of the) Net.

 

“A Guide to Eating Food Off the Floor.”

Feminist Themes’ regular “Wait… What?” column features The View co-host, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, and her take on the pro-choice versus pro-life debate.

In The Atlantic’s thought provoking piece on “The End of White America?”, Hua Hsu “discuss[es] Obama, football, hip-hop, and the elusive notion of a ‘post-racial’ society.”

Pandagon responds to Susan Faludi’s piece on third-wave feminism (which I haven’t read yet, but expect it to be included in an upcoming On the [Rest of the] Net), in which “she puts out evidence that younger feminists are sometimes unfair and ungrateful to older feminists, and that older feminists are sometimes so afraid of younger women that they go out of their way to exclude them… complaining that younger women don’t care.” Furthermore:

“… she reinforces a jumble of often conflicting stereotypes on younger feminists to discredit us: that we’re obsessed with navel-gazing over activism, that our obsession with technology comes at the expense of actual work, that we don’t know our history and don’t care about systemic issues, that we’re materialist[ic] and unwilling to challenge sexual exploitation for fear of pissing off men, that we’re so busy cultivating our graduate degrees writing about Lady Gaga… that we can’t be bothered to worry about real world issues.”

I do agree with some of this summary of Faludi’s piece, but Lady Gaga’s meat dress drew attention to vegetarianism, animal welfare and gay rights. They’re, like, real world issues, aren’t they?

Liz Greene delivers some particularly poignant points on parental relationships and “the family triangle” in “The Eternal Triangle”.

Buffy is “The Third Wave’s Final Girl”.

Jezebel reasons “Why Glee Still Needs to Work on Diversity”, while Brittany and Santana are “Queer Idols”:

“It wasn’t even until halfway through Glee’s first season that the first hint of queerness was even mentioned… Maybe you’d call it bisexual, maybe you’d call it heteroflexible, maybe you’d call it bicurious: whatever they are, it’s definitely a bit queer… Brittany is, if you will, an equal opportunity slut: one who’s willing to make out with whatever hotness crosses her path, regardless of gender… And among fellow fans of the show, my designation of Brittany and Santana as queer icons has met with some derision: their relationship is played for laughs, I’ve been told. They’re just straight girls making out for male attention… [But]… with the exception of their joint date with Finn, Brittany and Santana have hardly been shown using their relationship to win over boys… For me, Brittany and Santana represent a new mode of queer figure… : fluidly sexual, comfortable with same sex contacts, and more interested in finding happiness than finding the right label. They may not fit into the rigid structures of traditional sexual identities, but they’re comfortable enough with themselves not to care.”

More Jezebel: They’ve really been getting on the “slut-shaming bandwagon”, especially with their endorsement of Easy A. Now, they give their take on the “Ancient Slut-Shaming” of Cleopatra, as well as the “sexual double standards” on Jersey Shore. About the latter, they say:

“… The slut-shaming of Angelina… revealed their thoughts on sexual double standards. (The ‘thoughts’ being that sexual double standards exist, and that’s just the way it is.)… Pauly said about Angelina: ‘She brought all these random people home. She’s a girl. You don’t do that. That’s a guy thing. Guy’s do that, no girls.’… Shouldn’t Pauly and The Situation be grateful for sluts? If there were no sluts then they would never be able to have sex. Do they think for one minute that they would even want to live in a world in which all girls acted the way they’re ‘supposed’ to?”

“Who Stole Feminism?”, asks The Nation. Sarah Palin, Christine O’Donnell and all those right-wing extremists, that’s who!

“Sarah Palin opposes abortion and comprehensive sex education. While mayor of Wasilla she made sexual assault victims pay for their own rape kits. She also calls herself a feminist. Delaware GOP Senate nominee Christine O’Donnell has said that allowing women to attend military academies ‘cripples the readiness of our defence’ and that wives should ‘graciously submit’ to their husbandsbut her website touts her ‘commitment to the women’s movement. Pundits who once mocked women’s rights activists as ugly bra burners are abuzz over the ‘new conservative feminism’, and the Tea Party is lauding itself as a women’s movement.

The right once disparaged feminism as man-hating and baby-killing, but now ‘feminist’ is the must-have label for women on the right.”

“Geeks Versus Hipsters” is the equivalent of the passionate versus the apathetic, respectively, according to Gizmodo. And from the hipsters I’ve come into contact with, I’m inclined to agree.

Can Newsanchor Barbie be both hot and a feminist?

Jessica Rudd (yes, Kevin’s daughter) discusses the differences between chick-lit and (the nonexistent) dick-lit in a guest post on MamaMia.

Beneath the “campy sensationalism” of True Blood lies “the weird, seemingly reactionary politics” of “the right’s worst nightmare about post-gay-liberation America come to life.”

Sisters Are Doing it for Themselves… But Not the Gays.

 

Some frequent readers of this blog asked my why I haven’t posted anything about our new Prime Minister, Julia Gillard. Not only is she the first female leader of our country (our version of what Hillary Clinton could have been, if you will?), but it was a newsworthy event for the fact that Kevin Rudd was ousted during his first term, despite that it was by a woman.

There has been a lot of hoo-hah about Gillard apparently stabbing Rudd in the back and lying to him that she would never take his place. Sure, she may have lied, but who hasn’t? And when the fate of an entire country lies in incompetent hands (not all that incompetent, if you ask me), sometimes the ladies have gotta take matters into their own.

Other than this being a great step for womankind, it is also a great step for the unwed, childless, redheaded and faithless, with Gillard being the first unmarried, childless, redheaded and atheist PM.

However, that step doesn’t extend to the gays, as Gillard is just another (mostly) forward-thinking liberal (in the true sense of the word, not our country’s warped sense of what that means politically) who opposes gay marriage.

Apparently, it is her “personal view,” however my personal view is that she probably doesn’t want to ruffle more feathers than she already has within the first week of her appointment to PM, as opposed to truly believing “the marriage act being appropriate in its current form.”

It is also my personal view that opposing gay marriage is one big black mark against Gillard’s mostly positive repertoire.

Elsewhere: [Musings of an Inappropriate Woman] Four Articles I’d Like to Read on Julia Gillard, K-Rudd & “the Spill”.

[SMH] Gillard Against Gay Marriage.