Chapter 15 Australias Culinary Coming Out
Published: September 2013
Component type: chapter
Published in: Food and Drink: the cultural context
Parent DOI: 10.23912/978-1-908999-03-0-2005
Once perceived as a colonial backwater shaped by convicts, bushmen, laconic working class, and ANZACs, Australia has now asserted itself as a nation with strong and admired cultural attributes; home to world-class cities, globally recognised personalities, citizens of growing sophistication and a range of admired cultural institutions. One intriguing observation is that this accumulation of cultural capital has been mobilised by Australia’s emerging reputation in the realms of food and drink. Is Australia’s cultural ‘coming out’ indebted to its contemporary food and beverage professionals? Australia’s European heritage, and consequent worldwide exposure, began in the late 18th century. Before European contact, Australia’s knowledge of the world beyond its seaboards was limited to visits by the Macassan Indonesians fishing for trepang, or sea cucumber. In 1788, under pressure to alleviate pressure on their groaning penal system, exacerbated by the loss of the American colonies in the previous decade, the British sent Arthur Phillip to Sydney Cove to establish the first permanent European settlement in Terra Australis. Within a few decades, penal colonies were founded in all the other current Australian states – in or near their capitals; Hobart, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth. The military, free settlers and emancipated convicts brought with them their largely Anglo-Celtic heritage, habitus and culture – architecture, agricultural and later industrial economies, political, religious and social institutions, clothing, social mores and rituals, and of course food and drink. Many of these, arguably, were ill suited to the remote, sparse and harsh antipodean environment. Yet little changed and the tyranny of distance ensured that what change there was would be tediously slow.
- Richard Robinson, University of Queensland (Author)
For the source title:
- Donald Sloan, Oxford Brookes University (Editor)
Robinson, R. (2013) "Chapter 15 Australias Culinary Coming Out" In: Sloan, D. (ed) . Oxford: Goodfellow Publishers http://dx.doi.org/10.23912/978-1-908999-03-0-2330
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