Emblems of Identity : Seeking Popular Symbols that Identify Contemporary Australians

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Woodrow, Ross

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Kirker, Marjorie

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2013
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Abstract

This exegesis explores emblems of identity worn by contemporary Australians. Emblems are intrinsic to most cultures and have specific histories within Europe, Japan and Indigenous Australia. I investigate the historic use of emblems as a visual language of identification and their relationship to the manner in which society and its communities are structured. Notably, this research focuses on the constructed Australian identity as conveyed through the symbols that adorn leisure-wear and apparel worn at Australian sporting events. Through globalisation and marketing, symbols have been co-opted for “high end” fashion accessories and worldwide distribution. This thesis examines the implications of heraldry, Japanese kamon (family crests) and Indigenous designs in the popular-culture context. The exegesis also analyses the seemingly inextricable connection between alcohol consumption and popular team sports in Australia through branded sponsorship of major sporting codes (mainly male).

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Thesis (PhD Doctorate)

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Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

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Queensland College of Art

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The author owns the copyright in this thesis, unless stated otherwise.

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Public

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Subject

Multiculturalism, Australia

Emblems in art, Australia

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