[csaa-forum] Another attack on CS in the Oz

Graeme Turner graeme.turner at uq.edu.au
Fri Jul 28 12:38:57 CST 2006

For what it's worth, I share Mark's reading of it. There are real
differences between attacks such as this one and that provided by
Windschuttle. I think this person genuinely wanted to be informed by the
conference and found that its language was alienating - and therefore
suggested that maybe this is something we should think about if we want
our work to have a social function. Given the topic of the conference,
and its objectives, that's not an unreasonable position. It is damaging
to have it published in the Australian, and it may well be the case that
its inclusion is motivated by rather less sympathetic considerations
than its author's, but we need to think carefully about this kind of
stuff, take it one piece at a time, avoid characterising it as motivated
by a particular pathology or orientation, and be alert to the
possibility that they may actually have a genuine point with which we
can engage. 


A response could well admit the distance created by such language, while
nonetheless defending the need for people to work through these issues
in their own way and at the highest level, and suggest that while the
context of the topic might be the everyday, the capacity to deal with
these problems so as to fully understand them is quite clearly not
something that is part of the everyday life of most people. That is
where academics come in. 


It might also be useful to take the lead from this piece and consider if
there could be some more publicly accessible outcome from the conference
that even a columnist for the Australian would not find alienating, but
would find informative. 


And, finally, given the regularity with which this kind of issue is
raised - particularly by those writing in the Australian-it is probably
helpful to be reconciled to the fact this comes with the territory of
working in a critical discipline and we are always going to be called to
account by those outside it. I think we can wear that responsibility.   







From: csaa-forum-bounces at lists.cdu.edu.au
[mailto:csaa-forum-bounces at lists.cdu.edu.au] On Behalf Of Mark Gibson
Sent: Friday, 28 July 2006 12:27 PM
To: csaa-forum at lists.cdu.edu.au
Subject: Re: [csaa-forum] Another attack on CS in the Oz


Hi Amanda,

Is this one 'anti-left'? Looks to me more like an attempt to claim the
position of the 'true left' against a current, as Emma Dawson would have
it 'degraded', academic form. She's certainly 'anti-theory', but I
wonder whether a different kind of response is called for in cases like
these than to a Bolt or Windschuttle. It is not nice being attacked in
public, but isn't this really someone we should be trying to talk
around, find common ground with ...?

- Mg

On 28/7/06 9:11 AM, "Amanda Wise" <amanda.wise at scmp.mq.edu.au> wrote:

Any CSAA-ers want to write a letter defending us?
Another anti-left, anti-theory attack in today's Australian, attacking
the 'Everyday Multiculturalism' conference we are holding here at
Macquarie University which a number of you are presenting at.


Dr Amanda Wise 

Research Fellow & Manager Research Development 

Centre for Research on Social Inclusion Macquarie University 

Building W6A, Room 701, Phone: +61 2 9850-8835 

Email: amanda.wise at scmp.mq.edu.au <mailto:amanda.wise at scmp.mq.edu.au>
<mailto:amanda.wise at scmp.mq.edu.au>   Web: www.crsi.mq.edu.au
<http://www.crsi.mq.edu.au> <http://www.crsi.mq.edu.au>  

Author of Exile & Return among the East Timorese




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Editor, Continuum: Journal of Media & Cultural Studies

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