Because we are Australian

This speech was made at the Australia Day Luncheon in Adelaide by the Prime Minister. Like many of the Australia Day speeches it held true to same very basic concepts. It was a speech that talked about the core values of the Australian and what it meant to be an Australian. The Prime Minister focuses on four main concepts on her Australia Day Speech written in 2011. The first being mateship, the second community, this concept of a “fair go” and lastly the Australian Spirit which encompasses optimism, compassion, humility and tolerance.

The speech which was presented after the floods in Queensland was a reflection of Australia at its best as it clearly portrayed the values that Gillard spoke about. It was a true testament to the Australian spirit and values that make us Australian, or so Julia Gillard says. The repetition of these four core values emphasises and identifies what Julia Gillard sees as Australian Identity. The relentless repetition portrayed Australians as kind and generous country full of survivors and heroes.

“Some people said it’s incredible, the generosity of strangers.  But they weren’t strangers, really.

They were Australians.[1]

Gillard mentions this concept of mateship which basically links back to the ANZAC Spirit[2] and is an allusion to what the ANZAC Spirit represents. It is the fundamental core values of the Australian spirit that basically denotes mutual respect and unconditional assistance no matter what and also describes the relationships between people during times of challenge. This concept of mateship mentioned in Julia Gillard’s Australia Day Speech shows that this is a value which is highly regarded and something which all Australian should have some knowledge of.

Community is another thing which Gillard mentions, the sense of banding together to meet a challenge to overcome issues is something which is sacred. The concept of binding together to overcome grief and destruction and the ability to lend a helping hand with generosity and kindness is something which was seen after floods. And apparently it is something distinctive to Australia and our mindset. This attributes represented as a core value in all Australians by Gillard and it is something which was presented in the recounting of personal stories from victims, heroes and volunteers.

Australia is apparently founded on this concept of getting a fair go or giving someone a fair go and it’s something which is uniquely Australian, in the sense that no other countries calls it giving someone a fair go they have seme other way of phrasing the same concept. The age apparently lists is as one of the things “almost all Australians put at the top of their list when it comes to values[3].” I think that this shows what Australians believe in according to Julia Gillard and The Age and it is something which she wants the world to see about Australia.

Lastly she sums up the Australian spirit by listing qualities throughout her speech which she finds distinctively Australian. One of these things is the ability of Australian humour and larrikin behaviour to carry us through dark times, another thing mentioned is our humility and our compassion for others.  I think Gillard uses the back-story of the devastating floods to highlight the best qualities of Australians, the quote “Only in our darkest hour do we find the light” is something which Gillard uses to get the Australian public to listen to her call to action but also to present a view of Australia which is resilient and honourable. To present the true Australian spirit at its working best. This is a view which the public can take comfort from and also for the wider world to know, to help shape the perception of Australian identity and values.

[1] Gillard, Julia, Hon. “Because We Are Australian: Speech to the Australian Day Luncheon, Adelaide.” Press Office. N.p., 21 Feb. 2011. Web. 25 Aug. 2012. <;.

[2] “Mateship, Diggers and Wartime -.” N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Aug. 2012. <;.

[3]Gough, Deborah. “Australians Value a ‘fair Go’ Highest.” N.p., Nov. 2006. Web. 26 Aug. 2012. <;.


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