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This explains the addition of postscripts to several chapters which needed to be brought up to date. The exigencies of the paper-market also had their effect upon the format of the book. The Editor has purposely left untouched number of cases of overlapping of treatment and of contradictory opinion between certain authors, believing that the outside world is thus much more likely to secure a truly composite presentation of our social problems. The work is launched with great hopes that it will clear away much ignorance and misunderstanding concerning Australia, the picture of whose conditions has been largely left to the doubtful artistry of travelling politicians. We feel that the world is interested in this Commonwealth, and really wants accurate and scientific information about it.
I have to thank Mr. J. T. Sutcliffe, Secretary of the Commonwealth Basic Wage Commission, for preparing the index, and all my colleagues in this work for their cordial and patient co-operation.
M. A. University of Melbourne,
By W. Harrison Moore, C.M.G., B.A., LL.D.,
sity of Melbourne.
By Elton Mayo, M.A., Professor of Philo-
By Garnet V. Portus, M.A., B.Litt., Director
mic History in the University of Sydney.
By W. Jethro Brown, M.A., LL.D., President
the University of Adelaide.
By Herbert Heaton, M.A., M.Comm., Direc-
Economics in the University of Adelaide.
By G. Arnold Wood, M.A., Challis Professor
of History in the University of Sydney.
By H. S. Nicholas, Barrister-at-Law, New
By G. H. Knibbs, C.M.G., F.S.S., Common-
THE AUSTRALIAN OUTLOOK.*
By Professor Meredith Atkinson. It is not enough to say that the Australian nation is but a child of British stock reared in a new environment, or that the Australian Commonwealth is but the logical extension of British democracy. Australia is distinct from Britain if only in being more British than the Motherland or
any sister Dominion.† But under their more favourable social conditions Australians have developed highly distinctive national characteristics that cannot be fully described merely by calling them British. The Australian outlook is in many fundamentals widely different from that of the people of England or Scotland. In her social legislation, with its high ideal of general welfare, in her universal franchise, higher wages, better iiving and working conditions, and above all in the widespread spirit of freedom and personal independence, Australia is no improved copy of older countries. She has developed a nationalism which is more than ordinary patriotism. It is rooted in a passionate belief that Australian civilisation is profoundly different from that of the old world, and that Australia is on the way to become an ideal Commonwealth.
* Some of the matter of this chapter has already appeared in various Australian, American and British reviews, but I have modified it so largely that exact references cannot always be given.
†The four nationalities of the United Kingdom are thoroughly blended in the Australian people. Eighty-six per cent. of the population is Australian-born and over 95 per cent. British-born.
Commonwealth is a community, designed to meet the common needs of men, founded on the principle of the service of each for all.*
Though the self-complacency of many Australians regarding the superiority of their country commits them to some absurdities of comparison with older civilisations, their faith in their own country is at bottom as admirable as this definition of a Commonwealth demands. The Australian people are, indeed, consciously striving for an ever-rising standard of civilisation, in which every citizen will find the
the fullest opportunites for his complete development and happiness.
Australian Independence. Of the outstanding characteristic of Australians -namely, independence—much is due to their conscious repudiation of the bad traditions of the old world in favour of the strong idealism of a Commonwealth, established in the fresh fields and untainted atmosphere of a virgin continent. It is not that the people of Australia dislike Britain or the British, but they hate the old systems of caste and privilege, the devious diplomacy of European chancelleries, the chronic prevalence of destitution, the age-long servility of the poor, the atmosphere of aristocratic condescension, the reluctance to change prevalent amongst all classes in the old world. It has, therefore, become a cardinal feature of Australian policy to endeavour to cut adrift from the economic imperialism, the militarism and commercialism of Europe and America.
While England was still regarding the colonies as children who would never grow up, they had become self-governing dominions with a vigorous, indepenplent life of their own. The foundation of the Australian navy is a typical example of the true quality and significance of Australian nationalism —not a selfish launching out on a separatist policy,
* A. E. Zimmern:
Nationality and Government.”