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Georgina Tsolidis

Abstract

Historically, Australianness has been defined in contradistinction to its location – a British bastion in the Asia-Pacific region.A fear of being swamped by the Chinese – the ‘yellow peril’ – prompted federation, and a restrictive migration policy aimed at making Australia white. Thus, sinophobia has been significant in the national imaginary. This paper discusses how contemporary representations of Chineseness may be echoing this historic narrative of fear about being overrun. This is explored in the context of China’s shifting global significance and Australia’s growing economic relationship with China.