In the collective imagination Australia is an exotic frontier, uncorrupted and untamed, a reign of strange animals and unique plants, a natural paradise. Thanks to its mineral deposits, energy sources, and boundless grazing and farming land, the country is self-sufficient. Its inhabitants enjoy high employment rates, a solid welfare system, wide availability of public services, and an extensive variety of job opportunities. Its form of government is unusual: an atypical constitutional monarchy, an asymmetric federal structure, an advanced legal system that effectively safeguards basic freedoms and new-generation rights. It is a multicultural society, plagued by the obviously unsettled issue of the exploitation of Aborigines, whose marginalization persists despite the 2008 apology issued by the then prime minister, Kevin Rudd.
Carla Bassu teaches Institutions of Public Law and Constitutional Organization at the University of Sassari.