Historian Joan Beaumont says the Anzac legend needs to change

Historians in the News
tags: Australia, ANZAC, Joan Beaumont

One hundred years after the Gallipoli landings of April 1915, one of Australia’s leading historians has called for a change in the way the Anzac legend is commemorated.

Professor Joan Beaumont of The Australian National University (ANU) Strategic and Defence Studies Centre said the legend needs to adapt to the changing demographics of 20th century Australia.

“There is some evidence that certain immigrant groups, particularly those that come from countries which are war zones, have difficulty engaging with the Anzac legend,” Professor Beaumont said.

“The Anzac legend has sometimes been seen as the last hurrah of the white Australian male. If you have a foundational national narrative that is essentially centred on white men, how then does the rest of the population relate to it?”

Her comments come ahead of a conference on Gallipoli featuring historians from Australia, Britain and Turkey, hosted by ANU and the Australian War Memorial. ...

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