Flagging Exclusionary Nationalism

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperChapterpeer-review


    After an outline of the history, design and uses of the Australian flag, this paper considers the media frenzy and public outcry surrounding the publication of research findings identifying a relationship between the flying of Australian flags on cars for Australia Day and racist attitudes. While the findings did not surprise many social scientists, given the semiotics of the flag and its increasing use as a symbol of exclusion, they were apparently highly contentious for portions of the Australian public. This paper describes and analyses the public reaction using three case studies from among the hundreds of examples. An email, a blog discussion, and a newspaper article, are analysed to demonstrate overlapping themes focussed on racism, patriotism, and nationalism. The chapter concludes that the publicity flagging the relationship between flag use and exclusionary nationalism actually may have worked against the goal of producing a considered debate about appropriate forms of nationalism and flag use, delivering the flag into the hands of exclusionary nationalist.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationFlags, Color, and the Legal Narrative
    Subtitle of host publicationPublic Memory, Identity, and Critique
    EditorsAnne Wagner, Sarah Marusek
    Place of PublicationSwitzerland
    Number of pages25
    ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-32865-8
    ISBN (Print)978-3-030-32864-1
    Publication statusPublished - 2021

    Publication series

    NameLaw and Visual Jurisprudence
    ISSN (Print)2662-4532
    ISSN (Electronic)2662-4540


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