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Subject: Cultural Studies »


Arts for a multicultural Australia

Dr Amareswar Galla.

A interview with Dr Amareswar Galla on the terms of implementation.



Date Added:

18 July 2002


Interview for Making Multicultural Australia, 1996.


mov (Quicktime);

File size:



27 secs


National Centre for Cultural Heritage Science Studies, University of Canberra

I think in terms of implementation of arts for a multicultural Australia, certainly the policy framework developed by the Australia Council in the past, on paper, was quite exemplary, and in terms of commitment from certain sectors of the cultural industry, has been quite exemplary. However we have not yet developed a pro forma or a format to evaluate the outcomes...


Public opinion is yet to be canvassed adequately in relation to arts in a multicultural Australia. Public opinion is largely informed or misinformed through stereotypes. People are yet to come to terms with the fact that in a diverse society such as Australia, that arts would have a diverse base, and that diversity can only enrich artistic and cultural heritage in this country. Itís partly the inadequate resourcing for community based cultural mechanisms in this country which could be blamed. Governments have put more resources into infrastructure at the peak level, at the statutory body level, at the bureaucratic level, but when you actually look at the resourcing for community based cultural development, community based cultural infrastructure, we are way behind several countries of the world...

I think that there is quite a bit of gulf between our rhetoric and our reality and itís our maturity in the next five years in leading up to 2001 thatís going to challenge us as to how weíre going to bridge this gulf. And hopefully we will not repeat the 1988 situation in 2001, where in 1988 we forgot that we were an immigrant nation. Yes we also shamefully forgot the first nations of this country, but thatís being addressed in the lead-up to 2001, hopefully. But we also hope that 2001 not only recognises the promising of the cultural rights of the first peoples of this country, but also addresses the cultural rights of Australians largely as a nation of immigrants.

Interview for Making Multicultural Australia, 1996.