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Casuistry, commentary and killing cattle: Transgressing notional borders of belonging


Rolls, M, Casuistry, commentary and killing cattle: Transgressing notional borders of belonging, Journal Of Australian Studies, 41, (4) pp. 404-420. ISSN 1444-3058 (2017) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2017 International Australian Studies Association

DOI: doi:10.1080/14443058.2017.1361461


In 2011, ABC Televisionís Four Corners broadcast "A Bloody Business". The programís confronting subject was the live cattle trade to Indonesia, and in particular, disturbing slaughtering practices. Notable was repeated use of the phrases "Australian cattle", "Australian livestock" and "Australian animals". The inference was that these were "our" cattle, some of which suffered shockingly cruel deaths. The implicit nationalism informing the programís emotional provocation begs the question in what sense were the cattle, an introduced cloven-hooved domesticated animal, Australian? This raises related questions: if cattle are "ours", why not other exotic flora and fauna, and what of settlers and more recent immigrants too? After briefly discussing this program, the paper considers a range of different engagements with Australian landscapes. Of principal interest are affinities to landscape based on social organisation. Pivotal to this are notions of lifescapes and emotional geographies. These notions form the foundation for following discussion on several disparate entanglements with landscape. The discussion ranges across cattle, pastoralists, Aborigines, water buffalo, other exotic flora and fauna, kangaroo shooters, shearers and immigrant responses to national parks. In doing so, the paper explores the vexed issue of who and what can be included in the embrace of Australian nativeness.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:belonging, nativeness, nationalism, landscape, lifescape
Research Division:Philosophy and Religious Studies
Research Group:Philosophy
Research Field:Social and political philosophy
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Ethics
Objective Field:Social ethics
UTAS Author:Rolls, M (Dr Mitchell Rolls)
ID Code:122348
Year Published:2017
Web of Science® Times Cited:2
Deposited By:Office of the School of Humanities
Deposited On:2017-11-10
Last Modified:2018-05-08

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