AUSTRALIA - CULTURE AND HISTORY

Aboriginal Australia

Immerse yourself in a voyage, the places and experiences of Aboriginal Australia .
The Aboriginal people of Australia have a rich culture and life, which goes back at least 50,000 years.
Discover the different experiences available when you immerse yourself in Aboriginal Australia .
Explore places permeated by Aboriginal history in the Northern Territory. Visit the Red Centre of Australia and walk around the base of Uluru, accompanied by an Anangu guide. Admire Aboriginal art in Alice Springs, where the Arrernte people have been living for the past 20,000 years. Learn about the myths of the Dreamtime in the intricate rock art galleries of Kakadu National Park, declared a World Heritage Site.
Experience a voyage that brings you in contact with the oldest culture in the world. Drive along the Red Centre Way to sacred places like Uluru, Kata Tjuta and Kings Canyon. Follow the South Australian Loop through the chain of the Flinders Ranges, where you can listen to the stories of Adnyamathanha creation in front of a campfire. Follow the Savannah Way to the sites of Aboriginal rock art in Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia.


The Aboriginal dream of a timeless continent .

The Australian Aboriginal people have lived and thrived in the difficult natural environment of Australia, a place of unique beauty, for over 50,000 years. It is thought that the Australian Aborigines arrived by boat from South East Asia during the last Ice Age. At the time of the European invasion, up to one million Aboriginal people lived across the continent in 300 clans and spoke 250 languages ​​and 700 dialects. At that time, the Aborigines were hunters and farmers and travelled a lot to trade, find water and seasonal produce and for ritual and totemic gatherings . Then, as now , each clan had a spiritual connection with a particular area of the earth.
Despite the diversity of their territories - from the deserts of the Outback to the tropical rainforests , to snow-capped mountains - all Aboriginal people share the belief in an eternal and magical realm of the Dreamtime . According to the Aboriginal legends , spiritual totemic ancestors gave rise to all aspects of life. These spirit ancestors continue to connect the earth , natural phenomena , the tribal territory as well as the past, the present and the future in all aspects of Aboriginal culture.

The British invasion and arrival of convicts

The " Terra Australis " was the last land mass to be discovered by European explorers . The history of this mystical land and the riches it offered had inspired explorers to sail into the unknown. The great southern continent was officially claimed by the Europeans after the arrival of Captain James Cook in Botany Bay in 1770.
As a solution to overcrowded prisons in England and disorder caused by the American Revolution , the explorer and botanist Joseph Banks , pointed to New South Wales as the ideal location for a new penal colony. On 26 January 1788 he arrived in Sydney Harbour before the fleet of 11 ships, laden with 1,500 people , half of whom were convicts. Until the conclusion of the deportation in 1868, 160,000 convicts arrived in Australia, both men and women.
During the 1790's, the first free settlers began to arrive, but life for the convicts was very tough. The women lived with the threat of being sexually exploited and men hanged for minor offenses , such as theft. For the Aboriginal people came land expropriation, disease and death caused by new diseases brought by the settlers, who also destroyed traditional customs.

The expropriation of the continent

By the 1820's many soldiers, officers and freed convicts had already turned land received from the government into flourishing farms. The stories about Australia, where land was cheap and there was an abundance of work, led to an increasing flow of boatloads of adventurous emigrants arriving from Britain. The settlers , also called squatters, began to push deeper into Aboriginal territories , often armed , in search of pasture and water for their herds .
In 1825, a group of soldiers and freed convicts settled in the territory of the Yuggera People, close to Brisbane today . Perth was founded by an Englishman in 1829 and in 1835 a squatter sailed to Port Phillip Bay and chose the site on which Melbourne arose. At the same time a British private company , which was proud to have no connection with the convicts, founded Adelaide, in South Australia.

The Gold Rush brings wealth , immigrants and rebellions

Gold was discovered in New South Wales and in the central area of Victoria in 1851 , attracting thousands of young men and some adventurous young women from the colonies. They were joined by waves of gold seekers arriving by sea from China and an eclectic group of entertainers, pub owners, prostitutes and charlatans from all over the world. In Victoria the attempts of the British governor to impose order - with a monthly tax and heavy-handed soldiers - resulted in the bloody uprising of anti-authoritarianism in Eureka in 1854. In spite of the violence in the gold fields , the wealth generated by the metal and the wool brought substantial investment in Melbourne and Sydney, by the 1880's they had become elegant modern cities.


Australia becomes a nation

Australia became a federated nation after the union of the six colonies on January 1, 1901 . Today Australia is made ​​up of six states and two territories, each with its own parliament, its own flag and its own floral emblem. Women were given the right to vote in 1902 and the minimum wage was established in 1907.


Australia goes to war

The First World War had a devastating effect for Australia. In 1914 the country had fewer than 3 million people, but nearly 400,000 volunteered to fight. It is estimated that 60,000 of them died , while the wounded were tens of thousands . The 1920's saw the country react to pain, with a flurry of new cars and new cinema, jazz and American movies and fervor for the British Empire. When in 1929 came the Great Depression, the social and economic divisions grew deeper and many Australian financial institutions failed. Sport became the national distraction and sports heroes , such as racing horse Pharlap and cricketer Donald Bradman, were elevated to a state of super stardom.
During the Second World War, Australian forces made ​​a significant contribution to the Allied victory in Europe, Asia and the Pacific. The generation that fought in the war and survived acquired a strong pride in Australia.

The arrival of new Australians during the postwar boom
After the war ended in 1945 , hundreds of thousands of immigrants from all over Europe and the Middle East arrived in Australia. Many found employment in the booming manufacturing sector. Many of the women who had started working in factories while the men were at war, continued to do so even in peacetime .
The Australian economy grew during the entire decade of the 1950s, with important national projects, such as hydroelectric power station in the Snowy Mountains, near Canberra. International demand grew for Australia's main exports, metals, wool, meat and wheat. Suburban Australia also prospered. The rate of home ownership leaped from 40 percent in 1947 to over 70 percent in the 1960s.

 

Australia opens the mind

Like many other countries, Australia was overwhelmed by the atmosphere of the revolutionary sixties. The new country's ethnic diversity , the increasing autonomy from the United Kingdom and popular opposition to the Vietnam War were factors that contributed to an atmosphere of political, economic and social change. In 1967 the vast majority of Australians voted 'Yes' in the national referendum to allow the federal government to make laws on behalf of Aboriginal Australians and to include them in future censuses . This achievement was the result of a strong reformist campaign conducted by Aboriginal people and white people.
In 1972 the Labour Party , led by Advocate idealist Gough Whitlam , took over the government , putting an end to the dominion held by the coalition of the Liberal Party and the National Party during the war. In the three years after the new government abolished conscription and university fees and created a free health care for all. The White Australia Policy was abandoned in favour of multiculturalism ; divorce was introduced based on the irreconcilable breakdown of the marriage, without attributing blame to one of the spouses , and equal pay for women. However, in 1975 the inflation and scandals led the Governor General to dissolve the government . In subsequent elections , the Labour Party was heavily defeated and the coalition of the Liberal Party and National Party ruled until 1983.

From the seventies
Between 1983 and 1996 the Hawke - Keating Labor governments introduced a number of economic reforms , such as deregulation of the banking system and the fluctuation of the Australian dollar . In 1996 a coalition government led by John Howard won the election and was re-elected in 1998, 2001 and 2004. Liberal- National coalition launched several reforms , including changes to the tax system and the system that regulates the relationship between the parties. In 2007 the Labor Party led by Kevin Rudd was elected with a program of reform of industrial relations policies for climate change and the sectors of health and education .