Current Australian culture is quite similar to the British culture, in terms of language, food and the vibe. However, their cultural history is very different.
Aboriginals are the indigenous people of Australia. Before 1788, it was only Aboriginals that lived in Australia. They hunted a lot and put every part of the animal or plant to a good use, such as making baskets, tools, clothing and weapons. Every tribe of Aboriginals has a different language that they use and these tribes can still be found around today and they contribute largely to Australian culture. At my university abroad, I have studied a module called ‘Introduction to Australian Society’. This topic would not be taught at home and I have learnt a lot about Australian history. I have even been fortunate enough to go on a tour with an Aboriginal, where I learnt a lot about their way of living. Aboriginals have influenced many things today such as art, poetry and storytelling. Below is an example of Aboriginal art:
Whilst being abroad I have experienced a lot of new foods, not just from Australia but from all over the world. I have even tried Kangaroo, which is not much different to a regular beef burger. As I have met people from all over the world, they not only know how to cook different foods, but they also know good, authentic restaurants to go to, that they would eat from at home, that I have not experienced before. The best food I have tried is probably Mexican or Thai. It seems strange that not everyone knows what a roast dinner is or Yorkshire Puddings and I have also discovered that not everyone has a roast dinner on Christmas Day!
Another thing Australia does differently is football. I have learnt that Australians and Americans call British Football ‘Soccer’. Australians are really big on the AFL (Australian Football League). It is a completely different game to British football; I would say it is more like rugby or American Football. I have been to watch two games in Melbourne at the Emirates Stadium and the pitch is a very large oval shape. I have still not completely got the hang of the game but I am hoping to eventually before I leave! Below is a picture of the AFL pitch at the Emirates Stadium and also my friends and I before a game.
A massive part of studying abroad is learning about the culture. It is really interesting and I like to try and get involved with it when I can!