Anorak News | Cultural Cringe

Cultural Cringe

by | 20th, May 2004

‘WHAT we British have long suspected is now one step closer to being pronounced as true.

Australia has cultural icons of its own to be proud of

We talk not of George Bush having no brain, nor of Tony Blair being God’s representative on Earth, but that Australians are suffering from “self-imposed historical and cultural amnesia”.

The Telegraph hears Tony Abbott, the Australian health minister, tell an audience at Victoria’s Monash University, that the Australian attitude to Britain is like “teenagers blowing raspberries at their parents”.

While Australians love to portray themselves as pioneering individualists, they have, in reality, a lingering insecurity about being “an outpost of Anglo-Saxon culture on the edge of Asia”.

It is a topic that is bound to be up for discussion in every bar in London.

Thousands of “bar staff” can show the “Brits” (a term Abbott says is every bit as offensive as “Japs”) photos of the sun bursting through an ozone-free sky back home as they wax lyrical about bugs as big as your head and forest fires the size of Wales, all the while moaning about the British being this that and the other.

And Abbott wants it to stop. He wants Australians to stop whinging about the Poms.

Instead, Abbott wants Australians to celebrate their heritage and stop trying to prove that the British are a bunch “of stuck-up snobs”.

No matter whether we are better than them or not…’

Posted: 20th, May 2004 | In: Broadsheets Comment | TrackBack | Permalink