Project status: In progress
Ultimately, this thesis will refute the claim that the 'beach is dead' (Huntsman 2001; Booth 2001) and instead highlight the continually shifting, fluid significance of the beach as a site of public opinion, beyond simplistic binarisms. It incorporates deCerteau's flaneur, portraying the researcher as a wanderer, bricoleur, and beachcomber - searching the textually inscribed shoreline for signs of tension and contestation. This approach allows a theoretical based research project to incorporate elements of practice based methodologies.
- Research leader
- Organisational unit
- Lead unit Creative Industries Faculty
- Start date
- 1st January 2009
- End date
- 1st January 2012
- Research areas
This study revisits the space of the Australian beach in the aftermath of the Cronulla riots of 2005, claiming that since the riots, and despite the predicted 'death of the beach', this space has acquired a new set of meanings in the cultural imagination. The thesis focuses on representations of this increasingly complicated coastal territory, arguing that recent social and political turmoil enacted on the beach has changed the identity of the zone: neither mythic nor ordinary, the space of the beach is now a site of public struggle and contestation in the everyday.
Where writers such as Hartley and Green (2006) posit the beach as a cultural-political sphere, this project examines the imaginative impact of cultural rupture, arguing for the formation of a new space of the beach that is multi-layered and active, a site of troublesome knowledge rather than the benign and familiar territory of the past.