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邝李道: 华人和中华文化在澳大利亚 —从早期旅居者到当代

信息来源: 作者: 发布日期:2013-01-24 16:14:07 点击:

Kwong Lee Dow

Kwong was born and educated in Melboume. His grandparents came from SzeYap, Canton settling in Australia from the 1890s. One grandfather practiced traditional Chinese herbal medicine in country Victoria, the other was a market gardener in Launceston, Tasmania.

Much of his working life has been in the University of Melboume, as Professor of Education since 1973, as Dean of Education for twenty years, then as Deputy Vice-Chancellor for six years, and Vice-Chancellor in 2004. Since formal retirement he was briefly Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ballarat.

Kwong has held various Australian government and Victorian government appointments, leading and participating in reviews of university education, school and teacher education. He has held professional and govemment appointments in Hong Kong, New Zealand, Singapore and Saudi Arabia.

He has been recognized by professional bodies in the field of Education, and is a Member and an Officer in the Order ofAustralia.

He is married, with two adult daughters and two grandsons.

Chinese people and Chinese culture in Australia-from earlier sojourners through to today This talk is intended to set the scene for some of the topics for the Forum. It briefiy characterizes that part of the Chinese diaspora that came to Australia from the mid nineteenth century onwards, with a principal focus on recent times.

Early mass emigration from China arose from the combination of bad times at home and good times abroad. When the Cantonese called San Francisco Gum San (Gold Hills) and Australia Sum Gum San (New Gold Hills), they sailed from the Four Districts of the Pearl River delta to take steamships from Canton or Hong Kong to the goldfields of California, New South Wales and Victoria.

But in the rich multicultural communities that make up contemporary Australia, Chinese culture derives from recent emigrants from the People's Republic of China, from south-east Asian Chinese who came to Australia from the 1960s, as well as from the Australian bom descendants of nineteenth century pioneers. Within the stories of these people, we leam of two sets of social, cultural and political revolutions- those which have taken place in Australia, and those which have taken place in China- over this period of around 160 years.

Wang Gungwu stresses the speed at which the cultural landscape has changed since the late 1960s: 'Partly because of the new political realities in the region following the end of World War 2, and partly because of the guilty reaction against past inhumane policies, there was a readiness to welcome Asians into Australia which was unprecedented.

This was an extraordinary social and cultural revolution for Australia, something many settled white Australians have welcomed, but others have found hard to digest.'
Reviewing census data released this year, one commentator warned-don't aim your business at white Australia, because Australia hasn't looked that way for quite a while. The highest ever single annual increase in Australia'spopulation occurred in 2009, with an annual growth rate of l.8 percent, unmatched since 1972. This population increase owes more to migration than to natural increase, and migration includes long-term temporary migrants with student, holiday and business visas. The effect is strongest in the 25-29 year age group.

Lots of Australians speak languages other than English. Almost half of longer standing migrants and two-thirds of recent arrivals speak Languages other than English at home. The most frequent languages spoken at home are, in order- Mandarin, Italian, Arabic, Cantonese and Greek.

As the paper looks briefly at the cultural contributions of Chinese immigrants across many diverse fields- traditionalChinese medicine and health more broadly, education, business, technologies, philosophies and the visual andperforming arts, we can speculate whether today's Chinese migrants, better educated and less bound by traditional Chinese values, will repeat the migrant behaviours of their predecessors, or whether a totally new kind of Chinese Australian is evolving.