Australia and Oceania today.
Oceania is a scattered in the vast Pacific Ocean almost 10 thousand islands, the largest of which are New Guinea and New Zealand, occupying almost 80% of the total area of Oceania.
Australia together with Tasmania forms a single independent state, which is a member of the British Commonwealth – the Australian Union, formed in 1901.
A number of islands and archipelagoes of Oceania are included in 12 independent states: Papua New Guinea (APG), Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji, Federated States, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, Tonga, Western Samoa, Tuvalu and New Zealand.
Several dependent territories are also preserved.
The western part of the island of New Guinea belongs to Indonesia.
New Caledonia, Wallis and Futuna Islands, as well as the island territory of New Zealand Tokelau, Cook Islands and Niue belong to France. French Polynesia is commonly referred to as the Society Islands, Tubuai, Tuamotu, Gambier, the Marquesas Islands.
Northern Mariana Islands, Guam Island, Palau Islands, Midway Islands and Johnston Atoll, Hawaii Islands, American Samoa, Wake Island are a mandated territory of the United States.
British ownership – Pitcairn Island,
Easter Island is part of the state of Chile.
Norfolk Island (lies between Australia and Melanesia), considered the outer territory of Australia.
Most Australians prefer to live in cities. Only in Sydney and Melbourne live about 40% of the population of the country. Here, on the east coast with a mild favorable climate, the overwhelming majority of the country’s population is concentrated.
The ethnic structure of modern Australia and Oceania is very different from the pre-colonization period. Today, about 3/4 of the region’s population are non-indigenous people, over 2/3 of the population are people speaking the languages of the Indo-European family (the German group, Anglo-Australians, Anglo-Dutch, English, Scots, Americans, Germans and Dutch are predominant), there are representatives of the Romance group – The French, Italians and Spaniards.
Each of the countries of the Australian-Oceanic region has its very complex ethnic picture. Among them there are ethnically homogeneous countries, as well as countries with exceptionally complex ethnic composition of the population.
A homogeneous population structure is found in several countries of Polynesia and Micronesia. In Polynesia, this is Tonga (almost the entire population is Tongan people), Western and American Samoa (Samoa), Tokelau (Tokelau), Tuvalu (Tuvalu), Niue (Niue). In Micronesia, this is Kiribati (Kiribati), Marshall Islands (Marshall Islands), Palau (Palau).
The ethnic structure of the population in the countries of Papua and Melanesia is extremely complicated: Irian Jaya, APG, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu. In Irian Jaya, there are two hundred of Papuan and Austronesian peoples.
A special position is occupied by the small island of Pitcairn, whose population consists of several dozen Anglo-Polynesian mestizos.
Anglo-Polynesian mestizos live on another isolated island, Norfolk, but there are also purely European groups of British descent along with them.
Finally, a number of small islands (Wake, Midway, Johnston), on which the US military facilities are located, has a temporary population, mainly consisting of American servicemen.
Today, the aborigines of Australia and Oceania are divided into three main groups:
Australian Aborigines – 1% of the total population of Australia and Oceania, and pure-blooded Aborigines only half of this number, the rest – Mestizo, they say in pindzhizirovannom English. Only 1/3 of the people know their mother tongues. Most of the Aborigines lost all contact with the tribes.
Papuans – the largest group of indigenous people, 4.4 million people (55% of all Aborigines and 14% of the total population of the region). They live mainly in Papua New Guinea, Irian Jaya and a small group is concentrated in the Solomon Islands. Present Papuans are united in several ethnolinguistic communities: the Eng, the chimbu, the tribute, etc. The number of Papuan separate ethnic groups is small, it ranges from several hundred to several thousand representatives.
Austronesian-speaking peoples. There are 3.2 million people (41% of all aborigines and 11% of the total population of the region). All of them are related in language, in contrast to the Papuans.
Problems of interethnic relations.
the problem of overcoming the economic and cultural backwardness of indigenous people in the minority, and, secondly, the task of adapting the recent ones (Australia and New Zealand)
guerrilla struggle against the annexation of its territory to other countries (for example, Irian Jaya), as well as the struggle for independence (New Caledonia)
The problem of sharp contrasts in the ethnic structure of the population. For example, in Fiji, where the descendants of once-imported contract workers from India make up almost half of the population and outnumber the Fijian aborigines. The ruling Fijian elite, in every way trying to retain power, went even to the military putsch.
On some islands there are nuclear installations of the countries to which islands are formally subordinated (the Micronesian country of Palau, requires the withdrawal of American nuclear forces from its territory).
the problem of the merger of immigrants to one nation, which complicates the relationship between Aboriginal people and the “indigenous” population (New Caledonia)
the problem of preserving survivals of tribal hatred: “bounty hunting,” cannibalism (in the countries of Papua and Melanesia) and the growth of separatist tendencies, as was the case in two of the northernmost Solomon Islands, Bougainville and Bouquet, the separatists attempted to create the Republic of Northern Solomons Islands.
Migration. Significant impact on the change in the ethnic structure of the population of Australia and Oceania is caused by external migration (population exchange with other parts of the world).
External migration 1. most typical for Australia, New Zealand and Hawaii. In Australia, before, mainly traveled from the UK, Ireland and some other European countries, but now very significant entry to the Australian continent and from Asian countries. In New Zealand, as before, they mostly migrate from the British Isles. In Hawaii, a migratory stream is sent from California and other US states. There is also a return emigration from Australia, New Zealand and Hawaii to the countries of exodus of immigrants.
From some parts of the world, migrants are sent to a number of other countries in Oceania. They are: American servicemen and members of their families (on Guam Island, since US military bases are located here), the Chinese from Hong Kong and Taiwan (to Nauru Island for the development of phosphorites), the French (New Caledonia and French Polynesia) , Chileans (Easter Island)
Internal migration. A permanent migration exchange takes place between Australia and New Zealand.
The inhabitants of Australia and New Zealand migrate to the various islands of Oceania.
With regard to the migration of the indigenous inhabitants of Oceania to Australia, the islanders are sent there mainly for education and earnings, but, as a rule, return home.
Ethnic processes. For the two most economically developed, “resettled” in terms of the composition of the population of the countries of this region – Australia and New Zealand, the processes of assimilation are most characteristic. They consist in the gradual dissolution of immigrants and especially their descendants among Anglo-Australians and Anglo-Zelanders, who, as we know, form two young nations. The rate of assimilation of different immigrant groups is not the same. To some groups of immigrants the Australian and New Zealand society is prejudiced. Especially it concerns Asian immigrants, but a number of European nations are not averse to hostility. So, in Australia, the widespread opinion about the laziness of the Italians and their predisposition to crime. Even more rigid is the attitude of Australian society towards the Australians to the aborigines, who by the time of their first contacts with Europeans stood (along with the now extinct indigenous population of Tasmania) at the lowest level of social, economic and cultural development that was just a sign of written history. Some Anglo-Australians consider aborigines to be inferior, mentally retarded people, even attempts were made to identify them with Neanderthals. Ethnic assimilation Australian aborigines are practically not exposed, although 2/3 of them have passed to English. As for the Maori, the indigenous people of New Zealand, who reached a much higher level of development for the Europeans, they were better “integrated” with New Zealand society and culturally heavily “Europeanized.” If marriages between Anglo-Australians and Australian aborigines are almost non-existent, then marriages between Anglo-Saxon and Maori are not so rare. Nevertheless, despite the strong linguistic assimilation (the vast majority of Maori passed to English) and cultural adaptation, it can hardly be said that the Maori are already ethnically assimilated by Anglo-Saxons. Maori ethnic identity continues to be preserved not only by the “anglicized” in language and culture of Maori, but also by most Maori-European mestizo.
Although assimilation processes are most characteristic for Australia and New Zealand, consolidation processes also take place in them. First and foremost, we are talking about the further consolidation of the Anglo-Australian and Anglo-Dutch nations that were formed only a century ago.
In Australia, this process goes in two directions.
overcoming the continuing cultural differences between Anglo-Italians of English, Irish, Scottish and other origin,
the cultural specificity of the population of different Australian states (then still colonies) of New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia, and Tasmania is becoming less and less noticeable in the past and the last centuries.
In addition to ethno-unification processes, processes of ethnic division (separation and separation) take place in Oceania. The initial stage of ethnic grouping is experienced by Samoa, since 1899 politically divided into two groups – Western and Eastern. Western Samoa in 1962 achieved independence, the eastern ones live in the possession of the US American Samoa. The political isolation of the southernmost island from the Marian Archipelago of Guam also led to a certain ethnic separation of its inhabitants – the southern Chamorros – from its northern counterparts. The southern Chamorro even had a special name for “Guamanians” (although sometimes the old name is also used), which may indicate the beginning of the process of ethnic grouping.
Ethnic separation (also the initial stage) is observed in one of the alien groups of the population of Oceania – the Franconian-Caledonian (the so-called Caldosha). This ethnic group consists of representatives of the first, second, third and even fourth generations of descendants from France and considers its homeland primarily New Caledonia, although it remembers its genetic connection with France. The French-Caledonian people already had some cultural and everyday features that distinguish them from the French of the metropolis.
According to the religion, the majority of the population of Australia and Oceania are Protestants (44%), Catholics – 26%, Orthodox – 4%.
The average life expectancy of men is 75 years, women – 80 years.
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Australia and Oceania today.