In a world where visual indicators are prone to dictate social status, access to friendship circles and the overall social cohesion of minority communities, certain nations are proving just how reactive their societies are to the presence of growing minority populations.
As globalization tends to be to the world’s societies what a turbulent flight is to someone who’s afraid to fly, black minority populations have become particularly controversial.
In countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, many of the interactions between mainstream society and black minority culture have been limited to the influence of imported urban music and American cinema.
The exponential growth of black populations in Australia in recent years has closely paralleled the instability of regions in Africa where civil war, famine and violence have forced many groups into exile.
In 2008-2009, Australia received over 13,000 humanitarian settlers. This was accompanied with a major policy shift towards African refugees that resulted in the continent becoming the equal largest source area of successful applications for refugee status in Australia.
The result has conjured some unfortunate memories of Australia’s past dealings with the black indigenous population, which was suppressed in the early and mid twentieth century with social practices such as the ‘Stolen Generation’ and the ‘White Australia Policy’.