HEY U GUYS WANNA KNOW WHAT IT’S LIKE TO BE ME/A GIRL & DO THINGS LIKE TAKE PUBLIC TRANSIT??? well watch this and see what happened to me on the bus today (movie thrills await!!)
MS MR - Salty Sweet
There’s no doubt that Australia is a vast, sunny, intellectual gulag. The question is why. It’s certainly not for want of thinkers. We’re home to some brilliant minds, including Nobel-prize winning author J.M. Coetzee, cultural theorist Anna-Marie Jagose and legal theorist Martin Krygier. Yet how often do we hear them speak? Why aren’t they chased down for their opinions on policy and social issues rather than wheeling out ageing politicians and professional laymen again?
Perhaps there’s a link between the myth of Australian egalitarianism and anti-intellectualism. Australian history is popularly told as a story of democracy, equality and classlessness that broke from England’s stuffy, poncy, aristocratic elitism. We’re a place where hard yakka, not birth, will earn you success and by hard yakka we don’t mean intellectual labour. Although, of course, equality is a great goal, we’ve interpreted it to mean cultural conformity rather than a redistribution of wealth and power. The lowest common denominator exerts a tyrannical sway and tall poppies are lopped with blood-soaked scythes. Children learn from an early age that being clever is a source of shame. Ignorance is cool.