The History Wars Matter

Jeremy Sammut
08 November 2017 | OP159
The History Wars Matter

Despite what the post-modern theorists claim, the nation remains the ultimate political reality. The power of the national story to inspire our collective beliefs about ourselves as Australians, and for those beliefs to inspire the direction of our national life, is the reason the history wars matter.

The history wars — the on-going debate about the practice and teaching of Australian history — and about vitally important and potentially divisive subjects such as the history of Australian racism — remain a critically important battle of ideas.  Understanding the true meaning of Australian history, and debunking the perennial claims routinely made about the role our supposedly perpetual history of ‘racism’ allegedly continues to play in Australian society, is increasingly in the national interest today.

In the current age of grievance-mongering identity politics, the use, abuse and distortion of the Australian history lies behind the politicisation of racial issues by organisations such as Australian Human Rights Commission. Getting the history of Australian racism right has therefore never mattered more than now to counteract the threat identity politics poses to the social harmony that has become the hallmark of modern multi-racial Australia.

Buy Hardcopy
Latest Publications

Creativity in an Age of Constraint
Lionel Shriver
02 October 2019 | OP172

2019 John Bonython Lecture – Creativity in the Age of Constraint The proliferating dos and don’ts of political correctness, the predations of ‘gotcha’ identity politics and the hypersensitivities of the #MeToo movement are battering and boxing creativity. There is a danger in faithfully following this host of concocted rules and dutifully avoiding stepping on a plethora of toes. Among other…

READ MORE
The China Challenge
Rowan Callick
28 July 2019 | OP171

The rise of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) has helped make Australia rich, but it is also posing challenges to its values, interests, alliances and thus its identity. Xi Xinping’s ambitious New Era represents a decisive break with the Old Era under Deng Xiaoping when China’s foreign policy was to ‘hide’ its strength and ‘bide’ its time. China is…

READ MORE
Taking Back Control: Restoring Universalism in the Age of Identity Politics
Amanda Stoker
16 April 2019 | OP170

It can feel safer avoiding conversations on social issues that can be landmines at the best of times. But the longer those who believe in freedom and responsibility sit on the sidelines, the longer we give free rein for others to shape the debate. Where we can start to shift debate is on the role of government and other institutions…

READ MORE
Why God is Good for You
Greg Sheridan
28 November 2018 | OP169

Conversation with The Australian’s Foreign Editor Greg Sheridan and CIS senior research fellow Peter Kurti on the intellectual, historical and cultural case for belief in God. Australia and many parts of the West are losing faith in God. And yet the Judeo-Christian tradition has created and underpinned the moral and legal fabric of Western Civilisation. Where the moral certainties that underpin Australia’s institutions and laws are…

READ MORE
Have We All Gone Mad? The Snowflake Epidemic
Steven Schwartz, Lindsay Shepherd, Claire Lehmann, Tiffany Jenkins
22 November 2018 | OP168

University campuses throughout the West are in the grip of a troubling social phenomenon, now in danger of spreading beyond the ivy walls. Once bastions of intellectual rigour and freedom of thought, universities have become closed-minded and self-censoring, pandering to what appear from the outside to be ridiculously heightened sensitivities and undeserved entitlement. Safe spaces, trigger warnings and counselling on…

READ MORE