Americanization and Australia

Americanization and Australia

Americanization and Australia

Americanization and Australia

Synopsis

Americanization and Australia is a collection of essays exploring the negotiation of influence and power involved in Americanization abroad. Offering a diverse response by specialists in several fields, this book is an investigation of identity politics.

Excerpt

This collection of essays arises from various responses to the editors' 1993 book, Implicated: The United States in Australia, which analysed 200 years of actual and imagined 'Americanisation' of the younger Pacific nation. Implicated sought to understand the processes usually labelled 'Americanisation' by contextualising the most blatantly imitative aspects of Australian history and culture within modernisation and the globalisation of the economic sphere, especially since World War II. As global capital switches its nominal allegiance in a nanosecond and as the migration of goods, information and people is effected on an unprecedented scale, it is more obvious than ever that no island is an island, and that Australia's isolation is less significant than its recent historical links with powerful Anglophone nations, most obviously the United States.

Experts in many fields have accepted the invitation to discuss the relationships that exist between the United States and Australia in areas as different as the law and industrial relations, recent 'grunge' literature and action movies. Each addresses what the United States means to Australia and the historical background to these most important relationships. The various writers share no general view of the putative 'Americanisation' of Australia, but they all reject as simplistic any interpretation which reduces the process to economic or cultural 'imperialism'. Some emphasise the empirical details of the relationship, others are more theoretically interpretative.

We believe the essays represent a rich repertoire of argument and illustration relating to the controversy of Australia's 'Americanisation'.

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