The Australian identity is a diverse concept that has developed overtime through significant events in our history. As a result of these events, it has established Australia into a multicultural society that now includes numerous lifestyles. Further explored in the movie ‘Rabbit Proof Fence’ directed by Phillip Nyce, which exhibits how the Australian Aboriginals were forced into a westernised lifestyle by the British and half caste kids were taken away and put into camps to adapt to the white way of life, which was also known as the Stolen Generation. The poem ‘crossing the red sea’ written by Peter skrynecki is a prime example of the depiction of the great physical journey that these migrants are taking, it also let’s the audience see the inner journey involved for the migrants.
Phillip Noyce’s ‘rabbit proof fence’ expresses many of the values and attitudes regarding respect and dignity. This is clearly shown by the unjust policy with the mistreatment of the aboriginal people. By using sisters; molly, daisy and Gracie, Boyce creates a story that explores and contrasts issues such as racial segregation/imperialism, masculine stereotypes, racial prejudice and deprived of freedom. It provides the audience with an insight of the division between the Europeans and the aboriginal people. The director displays these themes by the use of symbolism and motifs. The rabbit proof fence is the central motif. It runs from north to south of Western Australia and was holy to keep rabbits away from farmland. It is very symbolic as when it was built because it kept the aboriginals in one place therefore shows how they were restricted in their movements.
A journey can be considered a physical movement from one place to another, but there are much deeper meanings conveyed in a journey. This can be seen in peter skrzynecki’s poems in the core text ‘immigrant chronicles’. The poems ‘crossing the red sea’ significantly convey the meaning of journeys. The poem captures the immigrant experience between the two worlds, leaving the homeland and towards the new world. The poet has deliberately structured the poem into five sections to divide the different stages of the physical voyage.