11 November 2014

Tim SoutphommasaneIt’s the singlet with the slogan that has stoked controversy, led to accusations of racism and prompted debate about what it means to be an Australian.

 Emblazoned with the words “If You Don’t Love It, Leave It” under an image of the Australian flag, the singlet was withdrawn from sale from a retail chain outlet last month.

For Australian Race Discrimination Commissioner, Tim Soutphommasane, who will present the Centre for Research in Education (CREd) Oration 2014 this Thursday, the singlet spells more than just a wardrobe malfunction.

“Of late we’ve had people say that patriotism must mean, “Australia, love it or leave”. That’s not the kind of patriotism we should stand for,” Dr Southphommasane says.

“A love of country should be generous and inclusive. There remains an important need for us to reflect on the demands of living in a multicultural society and not lose sight of the public purpose behind education.”     

As well as touching on contemporary debates about patriotism, Dr Soutphommasane’s oration will focus on tolerance, civility, casual racism and the treatment of race in the media.

Associate Professor Rob Hattam says the annual oration, which is sponsored by CREd, is an opportunity to examine the broader social purposes of education.

Australian Race Discrimination Commissioner, Tim Soutphommasane will provide all of us, educators and citizens, with a chance to reflect on the importance of educating the nation about human rights,” Assoc Prof Hattam says.

“His talk will provoke us to think about what might be important in a national curriculum, how we might think about an inclusive and just Australia.”

The CREd Oration, Educating the nation about human rights, will take place on Thursday November 13 from 6:00-7:45pm at UniSA’s Allan Scott Auditorium, Hawke Building, City West campus.

CREd is dedicated to contextualised understandings of education across the life-span, including child-care, schools, training institutions, universities and sites of informal learning.

Contact for interview: Assoc Prof Robert Hattam office (08) 8302 4226 email robert.hattam@unisa.edu.au

Media Contacts:

Dominic O’Grady, Media Adviser to Dr Tim Soutphommasane mobile 0419 258 597

Will Venn office (08) 8302 0096 mobile 0401 366 054 email willvenn@unisa.edu.au

Other articles you may be interested in