White Australia By S. Angelo Head Teacher History East Hills Girls Technology High School 2007 Immigration Restriction Policy History – Racist attitudes Economics Fear History 19th C. Australia had a long history of bad relations between white and non-white people Discrimination against Aborigines had existed since Europeans settled here Gold Rushes led to large numbers of Chinese coming to Australia – generally hard working, they were often accused of being evil and corrupt Racist Attitudes Darwin’s theory of the Survival of the Fittest gave the idea that humans are superior White people saw themselves as being better than non-white people White people had been invading and taking over many lands where the black population became virtual slaves – Africa, India and many pacific islands Economics Asian workers would work for less money than white workers The attitudes of trade unions was that it was important to protect the rights of Australian workers – so they did not want Asian or black workers here The Working Man’s Paradise would only exist if cheap labour was kept out FEAR Many Australians at the time were afraid of – Religions other than Christianity – Coloured immigrants “polluting” our white “purity” with interracial marriages – what they did not know or understand – Australia filling up with Chinese people Features of White Australia Policy Part 1 1901 Immigration Restriction Act – Suspect migrants were given a ‘dictation test’ – Immigration officers could choose the language for the test – if they could not pass the test they were excluded – This way exclusion was based on education and not race Features of White Australia Policy Part 2 1906 Pacific Islanders Labourers Act – Allowed pacific islanders who were brought to Australia since 1879 to be returned to their native countries - Kanakas – Forced out many workers who had made their homes in Australia – especially Queensland 1901 Post and Telegraph Act – Prevented non-whites from handling Australian mail Questions/Activities 1. Why did the Australian colonies/states want a White Australia Policy? 2. What aspects of White Australia were associated with the reasons for Australia federating in 1901? 3. What features of White Australian life made it a “Working Man’s Paradise”?