Changing Australia’s national conversation

I started my third semester with a few doubts, not about what I like or the things which I found interesting. That type of things never fade away and in Australia I discovered that people’s misconceptions and prejudices about what is different sucked in all the possible ways. You could imagine the conditions when you opened a printing edition of Sunday Age on the last weekend and I found something the article “The not-so clever country”, written by John Elder, with a different name in its digital version “Is anti-intellectualism killing the national conversation”. The author’s description about the negative aspects from Australian culture, which typified their citizens like racists, anti-intellectuals and against any type of change for the status quo, absolutely draining all hope from its creative system.

However, I have seen a few days ago an advertising e-mail from the University of Melbourne to attend the event Inspiring a Creative Australia organized by The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS), which was a surprise. I had not planned to go but the questions after reading the article in the newspaper only increase my curiosity about the challenges for this society to overcome the limits in its collective perception, especially when  they used to need most of the time to work with the things in the “same way”. Perhaps, it would be the relevant task in the discussion about changing the conditions to improve this country with creativity.

If we think about the people who discover new things, they are probably searching for something new or different. Curiosity and the lack of rejection about being in a different environment, changing routines, knowing different people while discovering things from a different perspective, these had been the actions that human had done for centuries. If people are not interested in variety, the possibility to transform ideas would be harder or at least, impossible at some point.

I am humble to say it is not something I have seen only in Australia but also in Latin America, where Populism is something you could search for in the political arena from different countries. I do because it is possible that someone would like to say something like “If you do not like it, leave Australia”, but I am student and I am trying to learn as much as possible so the discussion about the changes in political and social interactions are things that interest me, especially when I am learning about communication and society. When I listen or read about this type of commitments from different organizations or citizens involved through their work to motivate people to build a different way of thinking for increasing the number of people who think and analyze the different issues around them, I feel motivated and I think that creativity is an excellent tool to conquer what every society needs. The question is will it be enough?

The truth about creativity is being open to new things, new ideas, new vision or a different perception about the things but how Australians would feel ready to this type of commitment when they are deeply attached to some social and cultural paradigms. Without doubts, the situation is not only about becoming critical but transforming the ways of Australian society or other societies with similar political systems to do not feel everything out of their structures like a threat or a menace, because the best way to change something is stopping with the fear for the unknown. In my case, I would be able to tell that it is not easy, especially when you could find some people so attached to what the past said or old books, or their parents, but the truth is if you want creativity influence your environment, you need to focus in thinking out of your regular limits.  This issue is happening in different countries, where people would not like to do an effort to think out of the structure created by policies and governments, organizations or even education system, which do not let them think or work in different ways. A complete loss for social capital.