Construction of National Identity: Mechanisms Applied to the Australian Anzac Myth Cover Image

Postupak oblikovanja nacionalnog identiteta na primeru australijskog mita o Anzaku
Construction of National Identity: Mechanisms Applied to the Australian Anzac Myth

Author(s): Tanja Parezanović
Subject(s): Developing nations
Keywords: national identity; mass media; The Anzac Book; Benedict Anderson; national myth; creation myth

Summary/Abstract: The article deals with Australia’s participation in World War I, more particularly, with the infamous defeat of the Australian Anzacs at Gallipolli. This defeat was used in Australia’s media discourse as historical background for the targeted and conscious imaginary construction of national identity. In accordance with the theoretical framework provided by Benedict Anderson, this identity was constructed by means of, among other things, specific use of language, mass distribution and democratization of the media, fictional amalgamation of the past, present and future into the same simultaneous level, as well as through the narrative reliance on the classical mythology of the Western world. The examples used in this article to illustrate the mechanisms of the imaginary construction of national identity are taken from The Anzac Book, a specific 1916 phenomenon of the Australian wartime propaganda. Finally, the article also addresses the questions of validity, authenticity and sustainability of the national myth as shaped and presented by the Anzac Myth, in the contemporary context of Australia’s mass celebrations of the Great War centenary.

  • Issue Year: 2015
  • Issue No: 7
  • Page Range: 147-161
  • Page Count: 15
  • Language: Serbian