We are all learners now

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  • Published 20100802
  • ISBN: 9781921656170
  • Extent: 264 pp
  • Paperback (234 x 153mm), eBook

Shortlisted, 2010 Australian Human Rights Commission Awards, Print Media Category

I AM NOT an ocean person. I don’t like the sea particularly – it makes me nervous, and I find its endlessly shifting tidal sighs annoying and distracting rather than calming. And then there is the sand and the salt, which I don’t like either. It is too big and too empty to make me happy. A child of large cities, tall buildings, masses of people, I always feel affronted by the flat, featureless nothing of the sea. But I have come to respect the tide: if not in its littoral presence, at least as a metaphor. My unenthusiastic observation of Australian beaches over the two decades of my own migrant past here has taught me how well tidal movements re-enact the cross-cultural encounter – that undetectable moment of transition and transformation when tidal seawater washes up onto the shore, depositing its load of microbes, shells, seaweed and sand, and at the same time bearing other loads away, washing the shoreline clean of what was there moments before.

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About the author

Michele Grossman

Michele Grossman is an associate professor and the associate dean of research and training at Victoria University, Melbourne. Her books include Blacklines: Contemporary Critical...

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