Driving in the Suburbs: The Making and Unmaking of Multicultural Social Space in a Film by Young Arab Australian Film Makers

Cambridge Scholars Publishing
Publication Type:
Cultures and / of Globalization, 2011, 1, pp. 138 - 152
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This chapter considers the film Trouble Comes To Me as a narrative of everyday events in the life of young Arab Australian men, as they are articulated across the social space of a multicultural suburb in Australia. I argued that this film operates at different levels entering the media debate promoted in the early 2000 by mainstream media and the conservative government on people 'of Middle Eastern Appearances' . The film thus re-appropriates the mainstream representation of Arab Australians as criminal others, by taking the viewer cruising in a car with four young men who are stopped and searched by the police with no apparent reason. In doing so it also creates a different discoursive arena and together with similar project contributes to the making of an independent public sphere. Most importantly it produces cultural capital for a whole community of young Arab Australian artists. The film is read as a metaphor for crossing affective borders, or invisible borders put in place by the governmental imaginary of the dominant Australian culture to manage the placing and distribution of others into the national space.
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