“Assume that all workers labouring here belong here, and must be treated on a basis of equality, and respected accordingly- indeed honoured- especially workers of foreign origin”
– Alain Badiou
Point one of Alain Badiou’s chapter ‘Eight points, to Start With’ reinforces the significance and importance of refugees, and how they deserve equality and recognition. On a basis of this view, social movements play a big part in determining the treatment of refugees and the construction of the world in which they live in. Badiou’s chapter ‘Only One World’ states that there is no such thing as one world existing. Badiou reinforces that there are two world’s within the one which humans exist. He defines this as the world of the rich and the powerful, and the world of the excluded, subjected and persecuted. It is obvious to distinguish the types of people who live within each world. It is the governments that occupy the world of power and capitalism, and the refugees as the prosecuted. The social movements in Australia regarding the asylum seekers demonstrate Badiou’s perspective on foreigner’s existence. There are many protests and campaigns from Australian individual’s and the government demanding to stop refugees from entering the country. I was one of those individuals who were ignorant towards refugees, and I also supported the negative views placed on refugees as portrayed through the media. I did not understand fully the types of persecution that refugees are fleeing, and why they are so desperate to come to Australia. I always questioned how genuine the boat people are. However, Badiou’s readings widened my narrow views of the world and the division of human existence imposed by the manipulative governments. Furthermore, the social movements that are against asylum seekers construct a detrimental view on refugees, reinforcing that these people come from a different world. Refugees lack respect, equality and basic human rights from the Australian government. Badiou implies the refugees are somewhat ‘locked out’ of the world. Barriers are being constructed all over the world to ensure the poor remain locked in their place. The Australian government stress the construction of these “walls” through exercising immigration policies. Many don’t acknowledge the potential skills or influences in which refugees could offer. They deserve the right to live freely and to settle safely. It can be argued that Australia’s ‘multiculturalism’ seems to be enforced when it suits the government. Many cultures, religions, and nationalities have settled in Australia over the years. Many have brought skills, diversity, and food culture and most importantly, they have contributed to what Australia is now known as a ‘multicultural’ country. Furthermore, it can be argued as capitalism has strengthened in Australia, discrimination and exclusion has also developed. Is it the individual’s fear that refugees are going to invade and somewhat take over? An optimistic message is required throughout the world in order to strengthen supporting views on refugees, and to show compassion for those who are suffering.
Badiou, A. (2008). ‘Eight points, to start with’, in The meaning of Sarkozy (pp. 43-51). London, UK.
Badiou, A. (2008). ‘Only one world’, in The meaning of Sarkozy (pp. 73-90). London, UK.
No human being is illegal [Image] ( n.d.) Retrieved from http://archive.greens.org.au/policies/care-for-people/immigration-and-refugees
Refugees [Image] (n.d.). Retrieved from http://safecom.org.au/refugees1.htm
Equality [Image] (2010, October 28). Retrieved from http://jhrmcgill.wordpress.com/2010/10/