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‘Official’ discourses of race and racism: inclusion, intent and inversion mediated within journalistic communiqués vis-à-vis the Australian indigenous athlete

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In May 2008, I wrote to the editor of a Melbourne newspaper pointing out that an article discussing differences between two superstars of the Australian Football League (AFL), one white (team oriented) and the other black (self oriented), conformed to racial dualism of intellect and instinct. My inquiry regarding the rejection of my letter began a process of correspondence which was instructive for unearthing a philosophy of racism defined by ‘intent’ to be ‘racist’. This article presents a case study of editorial correspondence to argue the inverting of race and racism. Racial difference now marks equality not inequality. The author draws on critical race theory to claim that racial hierarchies embedded within celebratory discourses of inclusion, in response to journalistic defence of objectivity, mark the changing significance of race and racism.
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Keywords: Australia; indigenous; media; race; racism

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2011

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