Reader feedback: Not this Aussie!

Re: Winning over the Aussies, Voice from abroad By Duncan Edghill, Dec 22 - Jan 11, Vol 9, No 49

While I sympathize with the basic sentiment of Duncan Edghill's article regarding the failure, so far, of the Slovak tourist industry to capitalize on the Australian tourist dollar, I was saddened by the tenor of his article. As an Australian in my third year of working in Slovakia, and loving it, I couldn't help taking offence at the derogatory, one-sided picture he painted of Australian culture. In my travels I have seen examples of "the ugly Australian" who were just like the "typical Australian" described by Duncan, and felt ashamed, as the majority of Australians are not at all like that.

Fortunately, many readers, both Slovak and foreign, have visited or lived in Australia, and know that it has a wonderfully rich, multicultural society. Many of us love our beer, our sport, our opera, our scientific community's achievements, our literature, our beautiful country, etc. And Duncan is right; we love to travel. Many of us have respect for other cultures and enjoy learning about and experiencing them. In short, we are interested, interesting and various, like people of other cultures. Duncan, why did you have to perpetuate this ugly, inaccurate, and out-dated myth about us?

Di Chenoweth
Slovakia

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Dolný Kubín