The Australian Country Girl: History, Image, Experience
The Australian Country Girl: History, Image, Experience offers a detailed analysis of the experience and the image of Australian country girlhood. In Australia, 'country girl' names a field of experiences and life-stories by girls and women who have grown up outside of the demographically dominant urban centres. But it also names a set of ideas about Australia that is surprisingly consistent across the long twentieth century despite also working as an index of changing times. For a long period in Australian history, well before Federation and long after it, public and popular culture openly equated 'Australian character' with rural life. This image of Australian-ness sometimes went by the name of the 'bush man', now a staple of Australian history. This has been counterbalanced post World War II and increased immigration, by an image of sophisticated Australian modernity located in multicultural cities. These images of Australia balance rather than contradict one another in many ways and the more cosmopolitan image of Australia is often in dialogue with that preceding image of 'the bush'. This book does not offer a corrective to the story of Australian national identity but rather a fresh perspective on this history and a new focus on the ever-changing experience of Australian rural life. It argues that the country girl has not only been a long-standing counterpart to the Australian bush man she has, more importantly, figured as a point of dialogue between the country and the city for popular culture and for public sphere narratives about Australian society and identity.
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Aboriginal girls Alex Alston argues Australian country girl Australian country girlhood Australian Girl Bellbird Bett-Bett Blue Heelers Bourdieu boys Bruno Latour bush bush-bride bush-girl Chapter cinema colonial conservatism context country Australia Country Practice country town countrymindedness cultural capital cultural studies Dad and Dave daughter describes discussed drama emphasized ethnography experience film Freya gender girl culture girl’s groups Hillman and Rothman Hometown identity important Indigenous Inland Centre interested Jedda Kenway Kraack Kylie landscape Leyshon lives metropolitan Miss Showgirl narrative offers ongoing outmigration particular Pony Club popular culture population problem radio Raymond Williams regional centre represent representation River-Town role romance rural studies rural youth seems sense Show Society Show’s Showgirl competition significant soap opera social capital social networks space story structure of feeling suggests Summer Bay Sydney taste television town’s urban women young