People and Culture

19 Jan 2016

Australian People and Culture

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Diversity is one of the things that the Australian people are proud of. Multiculturalism is a big part of Australian culture because of their rich history. Australia has been heavily colonized by the British leading to the immigration of people from British and Irish descent. Due to a big reduction in the population during the Second World War, the Australian government proactively attempted to encourage immigrants into the country to boost the population and the workforce. Immigrants from Europe, especially in Greece, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Yugoslavia, Lebanon and Turkey came into the country in hopes of starting anew. Australia has now opened its gates to immigrants from the Southeast Asia by liberating its immigration policies while maintaining a strict regulation process. The many influences mixed together to create the culturally diverse Australia we know today.

Though multicultural, the Australian people are still able to identify to being an Aussie. There are characteristics that differentiate them everyone else. They share traits that make them Australian by mind and heart. These traits are evident when talking and spending time with anyone from Australia. Here is list of the Australians best traits.

Egalitarianism

Australians have theoretically been famous for assessing a person based on his/her characteristic over the color of the skin, gender, economic background or job. People from all walks of life meet and form a relationship that is hinged upon the way they treat each other. Treating each and every one equally removes from the Australians any form of class prejudice. This makes them very gracious hosts to any visitor.

Modesty

Showing of any forms extravagance is frowned upon by the Australian society. Their modesty is also associated with the lack of formality in their manner. They tend to be down play their success and introduce themselves only by first name. Any title attached to the name is removed when introduced and may be seen only in paper.

Relationship oriented

Immigrants make up a big percentage of the population of Australia especially after the World War when Australia opened up its borders for immigrants. People who wanted to start a new life; convicts, orphans, lone individuals, people who had no family came to Australia and found a new family in the friends they made. This strengthened the concept of friendship (or mateship) in the people of Australia. Australian soldiers or fighters who fought in foreign countries also remained side-by-side when a mate died. Since the Aussies were away from their families, they had no one else but each other. This strengthened their bond and the culture of being relationship oriented in the country.

Pub Life

Drinking pubs are famous all around the country. This is where the locals would meet to relax, discuss issues and socialize. Pub goers often come in groups with both new and old members. In groups that drink in pubs, there exists the social rule of rounds or shouts. This social rule is one of the most necessary to be mastered especially by foreigners who wish to stay in this land. A round is when one member of the group pays for the drinks of the whole drinking party. Every member of the group pays for a round equally, so, the number of rounds a group drinks is equal to the number of members of the drinking group. Rounds, like egalitarianism, are not prejudiced. It allows any new member of the group (or the society) to demonstrate being trustworthy and humble. Unnecessary acts of generosity is considered offensive thus, everyone, regardless of jobs, age, gender or skin color pays his/her share of the drink. Australia was able to maintain a peaceful co-existence with the natives and the tourists because of this cultural practice.

Empathy

Empathy is understanding the feeling of someone else. Unlike sympathy, which is like seeing another mans battered shoes and knowing how they feel while wearing it, empathy is wearing the battered shoes yourself. Australians are empathetic rather than sympathetic. It is common behavior to put up a façade of having no worries over problems in Australia. They feel like there is no need to show your pain, knowing that others have felt it too. If ever they do reveal how sad they are, they display it in such a way that it can be taken lightly. Australians have practiced this no worries mantra because of a part of its history: Australia was built by people who knew sadness and pain. The convicts who built Australia were some survivors of great pain, and having experienced the pain, they were not prepared to give and receive sympathy; only empathy.

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