Feature Article - Disrespect for Authority

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He Stole, He Murdered, and He Partied Too Hard, LEGENDS?

Part of our culture there has been many ideas to what the Australian narrative has become. Disrespect for authority is a very prominent idea that is still extremely vibrant in the nation today. This idea is one of many ideas that are helped to define the Australian Narrative.

Disrespect for Authority to Australians is renowned to someone who ‘crosses the line’ or ‘bends the rules’ for their benefits. This idea to Australians is so deeply embedded in our culture and heritage that we don’t even realise its happening. This obliviousness to, and blind acceptance of, the existence of anti-authoritarianism is by far the most dominant perception of the matter within our society.

A distinguishing feature of an Aussie, who disrespected authority, can be taken back to one of our nation’s true old time legends. We all know the tales of Ned Kelly, one of our heroes from the late 1800s. This ‘legend’ was known for his courage, boldness, and bad boy behavior. Ned murdered and stole, but we still over look those negative results of his behavior, and celebrate his willingness to stand up for him self. Ned was forced into taking such actions because of the unfair treatment both him and his family had received from those in authority.

It is only definite that Ned Kelly was a man who ‘bends the rules’ for his benefits, and he became famous for it. This then raises the question, is it right for Australia as a nation to celebrate such awful actions.

Those ethics, such as standing up for self rights and boldness from Ned Kelly have echoed through time, leaking into our culture through numerous texts. They have also found their way into our more contemporary culture, where they have flourished through the minds of many Australians.

Take the film Chopper for example; no doubt this film is a prime illustration of an Australian character that disrespects authority. Eric Banner plays the character of Chopper Reid...
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