Migrant Nation: Culture and Identity

Subject HIST20075 (2016)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2016.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2016:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 29-Feb-2016 to 29-May-2016
Assessment Period End 24-Jun-2016
Last date to Self-Enrol 11-Mar-2016
Census Date 31-Mar-2016
Last date to Withdraw without fail 06-May-2016

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 29 hours – 12 x 1.5 hour lectures and 11 x 1 hour tutorials
Total Time Commitment:

170 hours

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support: http://services.unimelb.edu.au/disability


Assoc Prof Sara Wills


Email: s.wills@unimelb.edu.au

Subject Overview:

What does it mean to live in a nation that has been built on immigration? What histories, policies and attitudes underpin this experience? And what key issues, challenges and opportunities face Australia and other nations as a result? This subject encourages students to engage critically with the history of Australia as a migrant nation through a variety of disciplinary perspectives. Topics covered include migration and refugee histories, the politics of immigration, the development of multicultural policies, critical debates about multiculturalism, racial politics, refugee issues, case studies of migrant communities and ethnic/national identities. Taught by specialists in the field, the subject draws on the work of historians, social and cultural theorists, policy makers, activists, writers and artists, and invites students to produce writing and research that explores controversial and contested issues. This subject will appeal to those with an interest in immigration, multiculturalism, refugee studies, ethnic and national identity, and those who seek to understand how history continues to shape contemporary society.

Learning Outcomes:

Students who complete this subject should be able to:

  • demonstrate a detailed knowledge of Australian immigration history, including key periods, policies and contexts;
  • locate, identify and analyse key documents, debates and voices in Australian immigration history, including those sometimes 'hidden from history';
  • understand how history and historical understanding of migration informs contemporary debates and policy contexts;
  • demonstrate an understanding of various conceptual and interdisciplinary approaches to understanding the history of immigration;
  • reflect critically on the concept of multiculturalism in an Australian context and in comparison to other nations;
  • produce written research on aspects of Australia's migrant past, including the histories of specific groups and individuals;
  • reflect upon how our understanding of migration has changed over time and in different places and contexts;
  • Identify the significance of the past in the present and in particular the legacy of the White Australia Policy in national and international debates; and
  • analyse key texts and articles and produce a précis of the key arguments, ideas and information they contain.

  • A weekly online mulitple choice lecture quiz (5%)
  • A weekly online reading quiz (5%)
  • A 1250 word migration heritage essay due mid-semester (35%)
  • A 2500 word research report due in the examination period (55%)

Hurdle requirement:

  • Students must attend a minimum of 75% of tutorials in order to pass this subject.
  • All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject.

Note: Assessment submitted late without an approved extension will be penalised at 10% per day. After five days late assessment will not be marked. In-class tasks missed without approval will not be marked.

Prescribed Texts:

Subject readings will be available online.

Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Links to further information: http://shaps.unimelb.edu.au/history
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Australian Studies
Graduate Certificate in Arts - History
Graduate Diploma in Arts - History

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