Multicultural histories and paternal genealogies

babes and bastards at the Global Cultural Diversity Conference

Suvendrini Perera, Joseph Pugliese

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial


As an institutional, legal and cultural construct the family unit functions to demarcate limits: to legitimate, include, authorise and enfold, even as it outlaws, excludes, prohibits, disowns and disallows. Representations of the nation as a multicultural family, as a diverse-but-united collectivity in pursuit of corporate aims, enact identical manoeuvres of inclusion and exclusion; simultaneously they endorse the hierarchies and the asymmetrical and coercive power relations by which the family is ongoingly constituted. To interrogate the complacent narrative of the happy multicultural family is to begin to construct alternative models and representations for understanding the heterogeneous, troublesome and unfinished stories of Australian multiculturalism.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)260-265
Number of pages6
JournalLaw, Text, Culture
Publication statusPublished - 1995
Externally publishedYes

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