Australia in the Midst of Cultural Globalization

Australia in the Midst of Cultural Globalization

Generally, Australia is known to be a very diverse country in the world. The 2011 Census of Population Report has revealed one in every four Australians is born overseas, which is 24.6% of the population. [1] In a nutshell, the country is multicultural and each culture has predominantly found their identity in every community. It is seemingly true that in this context the world is becoming a smaller place.

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The many faces of Australia

The multicultural identity and influence of Westernization have seen the economic, political and social growth not just locally but also in the international setting. However, it was not an easy and smooth path to the positive effects of globalization. The impact of having different cultures can also be a road to divide. But the advantage of Australia is its dominant Westernized or McDonaldized (or they would say it as Mackerized/Macca’s – their term for McDonald’s) influence. They are united in the ideals, values, and philosophies promoted by the West and coincide to the handling of issues and conflicts of globalization.

How is culture directly related to globalization in Australia?

According to Samuel Huntington’s theory, the greatest division among nations will be cultural and also note the important statement that he stood by,

“Differences in culture and religion create differences over policy issues…Religion reinforces the revival of ethnic identities.” [2]

There are two significant issues, namely racism and religious extremism, directly integrating culture and globalization, and it can relate to the differences in culture and religion.

Racism

One of the major issues faced in Australia is the issue of racism. Despite acceptance as citizens in the communities, there is still prevalence of discrimination. Even the aborigines (indigenous people) are marred with high levels of racism. Based on the human rights research reports, the findings were the following:

  • around 85% of respondents believe that racism is a current issue in Australia
  • around 20% of respondents had experienced forms of race-hate talk (verbal abuse, name-calling, racial slurs, offensive gestures etc)
  • around 11% of respondents identified as having experienced race-based exclusion from their workplaces and/or social activities
  • 7% of respondents identified as having experienced unfair treatment based on their race
  • 6% of respondents reported that they had experienced physical attacks based on their race [3]

This research also found that people born overseas experienced higher rates of racism than those born in Australia, and twice as likely to experience racism in the workplace. [3]

With different customs, practices and even with the mannerism in eating or the way to dress, there is rampant behavior of racism that will exist and it changes the identity of the individual in his or her actions.

Islamic Extremisms

The heightened issue of inevitable clash that has closely increased in the recent years is “the fault line between Western and Islamic differences.” (Huntington, 1997) The Arab/Muslim order has caused disparity in the post 9/11 era and London bombings in 2009. The alert levels of Australia had a domino effect on its security. The extremism of Islam and its influence of anti-Western ideologies have been the primary target in terms of terrorism prevention. The tension in foreign countries such as Syria and the rise of ISIS in the global aspect has also increased the amount of violence and protests of Anti-Islam in Australia.

Below is a video of Australian Muslims in protest and the message to Australians by Abu Khaled, also known as Neil Prakash, who is an Australian recruiter for ISIS.

In an interesting article of Adrian Morgan, an author, editor and radio host of Security Matters, Australia is becoming a hub of Islamic extremism. [4] The spread of Islamic radicalism has already changed Europe’s views of fundamentalism and it has started to reach the shores of Australia through education and the Internet. The perfect example was the distribution of the DVDs (videos) of an Australian-born Islamic leader Sheik Feiz Muhammad. His videos were speeches and lectures on beliefs that promote radicalism.

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The copies of the aforementioned videos have been banned and confiscated in order to control the widespread of radicalism in the neighboring cities outside Sydney. Unfortunately, the copies of the videos have already been uploaded online, particularly Youtube and can be downloaded and viewed in their own private meetings.

The question is why is this relevant to the security state of Australia?

According to further advice by U.S. terrorism consultant Evan Kohlmann, the leaked videos of Muhammad have become the ‘virtual bible’ that influences the incoming generation of attacking non-believers of the Islam – which condones the Jews, Hindus and Americans. The result of those who have followed the beliefs in the lectures are the tragedies brought about by Major Nidal Malika Hasan, who shot dead 13 military personnel at the Fort Hood army base in Texas in 2009, and Nigerian ‘underwear bomber’ Umar Farouk Mutallab to Detroit in 2009. Incidentally, those lectures were based on the writings of Yousef al-Ayyiri, the founder of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. [4]

What is the government of Australia working on to prevent terrorist attacks?

Per ASIO (Australia Security Intelligence Organization), Australia remains to be on top of the target lists of the terror organizations. Its landmarks, Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge, are the primary spots where attacks can highly occur, as revealed to their sources. The head of security is already aware of the risks and possible attacks, so high-security alert was placed on all high levels on the ground and particular to the crowded area. The highest possible attack will be on trains, because if anything goes wrong in the central system, it will shut down the ground lines of communication.

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Australian Security in Airports (Image from Google)

Another security measure being implemented is to stop young Australians from being radicalized. This imposes a huge threat if a local radical will direct its attacks since he or she is familiar with the territory and environment. The last preventive measure is the agreement of anti-terrorism laws where it has expanded its national security to both domestic and overseas. [5]

There may not be an intriguing event of war, bombings, or injustice that has erupted from Australia but the intense influence of the events globally has drawn its own struggle in cultural divide and religious extremism. With strong belief that multiculturalism will still bring the nation to unite against the issues of racism and Islamic extremism, it can be subjected that Australia is in the midst of cultural globalization and it will be interesting to learn how Aussies will continue to fight the struggle to promote peace and development.

References:

[1] 2011 Census reveals one in four Australians is born overseas.
Retrieved from: http://abs.gov.au/websitedbs/censushome.nsf/home/CO-59
[2] Huntington, S. P. (1997). The clash of civilizations and the remaking of world order. New York: Touchstone.
[3] Szoke, Helen. Racism exists in Australia – are we doing enough to address it?
Retrieved from: https://www.humanrights.gov.au/news/speeches/racism-exists-australia-are-we-doing-enough-address-it
[4] Morgan, Adrian. Can Australia escape the clash of civilizations?
Retrieved from http://www.nationalobserver.net/2012/85-1-morgan-australia-clash-civilisations.htm
[5] News.com.au. Experts: Australians more at risk of being hit by a car than witnessing terrorist attack on home soil.
Retrieved from: http://www.news.com.au/national/experts-australians-more-at-risk-of-being-hit-by-a-car-than-witnessing-terrorist-attack-on-home-soil/news-story/f28f5cee4749041bc8d52aa8b733f943
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7 thoughts on “Australia in the Midst of Cultural Globalization

  1. Just like many other countries around the world we are all seeing the trend of changing faces. One dominant race has to now accommodate or adjust to the change in culture and society. Australia has had its difficult periods when the Indigenous populations were third class citizens in a land of their own, however with the awareness of global issues people are now becoming more and more informed as Australia works towards making its society inclusive to all.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. As correctly said by Huntinton “Differences in culture and religion create differences over policy issues…Religion reinforces the revival of ethnic identities.” This saying perfectly fits in the scenario of Australia, we are all aware of the racisim clases in Australai. I have once encountered Australian artist from the indegenious community, she was very much determined to fight for the rights of indegenious people and expressed through her paintings. She was a active memmber as I could see the photos and videos in facebook where she actively took part and urging everyone to fight for their rights.Moreover the Islmaic extremist,these all issues leads to the negative inluence of cultural globalization, where culture has become the prime cause of conflict. Australia should embrace all the race and identities to settle the conflict of culture.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The globalization of Australian culture started began with the arrival of British in the 17th century. However, we can see there has been issues for Indigenous Australians due to racist government policies of governments. In the present, although the Australia is a highly multicultural society, it is clearly shown that Australian society is struggling with cultural divide and radical extremism, especially towards radical Islamist in fear of terror threats. I see the government has a large role in bringing all cultures together and build religious harmony in order to prevent issues that can happen in the future.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This was a great analysis of cultural globalization in Australia. I don’t think homogeny will be possible is such diverse country like Australia. As the country becomes more globalized it will be interesting to see how they will deal with the issue of racism. I wonder if that “inter clashing” of cultures will be greater than it clashing with other countries.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Pingback: The Globalization Shift of Security in Australia – The Aussies Towards Globalization

  6. Pingback: The Role of Religion in Australian Globalization – The Aussies Towards Globalization

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