Gender and Nation - Australia (Annotated Bibliography).

Essay by mystifiedUniversity, Bachelor'sB+, October 2003

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Reekie, G., 'Contesting Australia: Feminism and Histories of the Nation' in Whitlock. G. & Carter, D. (eds), Images of Australia: an Introductory Reader in Australian Studies, St Lucia: University of Queensland Press, 1994.

This article gave me understanding of the feminist challenge to nation since World War II. Reekie discusses how the female experience has been excluded from national identity and the imagined community of nation mainly due to women not being included in the formation of the national identity and histories.

I found her suggestion that nation is based on a fraternal community which would not exist except for the silent sacrifice and support of women, interesting. She suggests that in the past. reputed lack of evidence of feminine contribution to history and the fact that history has predominantly been written by male historians, has lead to exclusion of the female experience. Reekie also suggests that the masculinity of nation and national identity can only exist when the feminine experience is omitted.

Reekie states that since the 1970's, feminist historians have found a great deal of evidence of women's contribution to Australian history. The article suggests that the feminist challenges to traditional histories and identities of nation may demand a reappraisal of traditional histories of nation and cause chaos to the imagined fraternal community of nation.

This article, from a feminist perspective, gave me a different lens through which to view and consider the histories of nation and national identity.

Evans, R. & Thorpe, B., 'Commanding Men: Masculinities and the Convict System', Journal of Australian Studies, No. 56, 1998, pp. 17-34.

This article looks at how masculine authority of the early penal colony manipulated both genders, through punishment, into an almost singular group. Floggings produced feminine subservient behaviour in men and removing women's hair...