Tolerance... cultural diversity... reconciliation... human rights

Tuesday, 7 April 1998

On the night Pauline Hanson came to Adelaide to launch her One Nation Party, 8000 citizens wearing orange ribbons and carrying candles demonstrated their opposition with a peaceful march through the city streets.

So it is particularly appropriate that Adelaide should be the location for a major international symposium ­ the Fulbright Symposium, April 14-16 ­ to discuss the issues of tolerance, cultural diversity and pluralism, with a focus on reconciliation and human rights.

Native title, immigration and the ideal size of the Australian population have been at the centre of the political agenda and are questions around which there may well be an election this year. Those issues and the assumptions that underpin them will be the focus of the symposium.

Papers will be presented by a wide range of local and international speakers who are known for their long engagement with these issues in public life, academia and the law. The status of current proposals on immigration, reconciliation and native title under Australian international treaty obligations will also be a central theme.

From Australia: speakers include Marcia Langton, who will ask Is Reconciliation (in Australia) Possible?, and Henry Reynolds, who will address the controversial question, Does the Government's Ten-Point Wik Plan Contravene Australia's International Obligations?

Those concerned with questions about immigration, in particular Asian immigration into Australia, include Nancy Viviani and James Jupp. The Australian Minister for Immigration and Muticultural Affairs, the Hon. Phillip Ruddock, will also be a speaker at the symposium.

International speakers: include Diane Bell, an Australian anthropologist now based in the US, and Rennard Strickland, Professor of Law at the University of Oregon and author of Tonto's Revenge, who will present a Native American perspective on reconciliation and human rights.

The Fulbright Symposium will be held in the University of Adelaide's Elder Hall from April 14-16.

KEYNOTE SPEAKERS:

The Hon. John Olsen, Premier of South Australia

The Hon. Phillip Ruddock, BA, LLB, Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs, Australian Government, Member of the Australian House of Representatives since 1973.

Sir Ronald Wilson, AC, KBE, CMG, QC, former President of the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, who presented the Report of the National Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from their Families, Bringing them home, to the Australian Government in April 1997. He will speak on 'Reconciliation and Human Rights'.

Diane Bell, Henry R. Luce Professor of Religion, Economic Development and Social Justice, Holy Cross College, Worcester, Ma., USA, author of several books including Daughters of the Dreaming (1993) and Ngarrindjeri Wurruwarrin: A World that is, was, and will be (in press). Her topic is 'Cross-Cultural Confusions: Indigenous Traditions, Legal Confrontations and Ethnographic Uncertainties'.

Rennard Strickland, Dean and Philip H. Knight Professor of Law, University of Oregon, USA, former President of the Association of American Law Schools, recipient of the Spirit of Excellence Award from the American Bar Association's Commission on Minorities in the Profession in 1997, and author of many books including Tonto's Revenge: Reflections on American Indian Law, Life, Culture and Art (in press), and Trying a New Way: An Assessment of the Indian Self-Governance Demonstration Project (1992). He will speak on 'The Law as Sword and Shield: A Native American Perspective on Reconciliation and Human Rights'.

Hilary Charlesworth, Professor and Director of the Centre for International and Public Law, Faculty of Law, Australian National University, a member of the Executive Council of the American Society of International Law, and author of New Rights of International Redress for Human Rights Violations in Australia (1993). She will speak on 'Human Rights in International Perspective'.

James Jupp, Director of the Centre for Immigration and Multicultural Studies, Research School of Social Sciences, Australian National University, formerly a member of the national Advisory Council on Multicultural Affairs and chairman of the Review of Migrant and Multicultural Programs and Services, author of many books including Understanding Australian Multiculturalism (1996), The Politics of Australian Immigration (1993), Nations of Immigrants (1992) and Immigration (1991). He will speak on 'Formal Rights and Real Equity in an Immigrant Society'.

Marcia Langton AM, Ranger Professor of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies and Director of the Centre for Indigenous Natural & Cultural Resource Management, University of the Northern Territory. An Aboriginal woman with twelve years' experience as an anthropologist and twenty five years' experience in Aboriginal affairs and advocacy of Aboriginal rights. Her topic is: 'Is Reconciliation (in Australia) Possible?'

Henry Reynolds, Australian Research Council Senior Research Fellow, James Cook University, an historical consultant for the ABC's acclaimed documentary series Frontier, and author of numerous books including The Other Side of the Frontier (1976), Frontier (1987), The Law of the Land (1987) and Fate of a Free People (1995). His topic is 'Indigenous Rights and International Law: Does the Government's Ten-Point Wik Plan Contravene Australia's International Obligations?'

Nancy Viviani, Adjunct Professor, School of Asian Studies, Griffith University; was formerly Professor of International Politics and Dean of the Faculty of Asian and International Studies, a senior official in the United Nations and an adviser to Australian Ministers for Foreign Affairs and to parliamentary committees. She has published widely on Australian foreign policy and migration, and on regional politics. Her most recent book is The Indochinese in Australia 1975-1995: From Burnt Boats to Barbecues (1996). Her topic is: 'Asian Migration: Human Rights, Human Wrongs, Citizenship and Multiculturalism'.

 

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