Why Australians love car crashes

catherineSimpsonAustralians are peculiarly fascinated by car crashes, contends Catherine Simpson of Macquarie University in Sydney.

Simpson explains in her monograph Antipodean Automobility and Crash: Treachery, Trespass and Transformation of the Open Road, published in the Australian Humanities Review: “I explore the significance of the car crash in postcolonial Australia and argue that car accidents are not only presented as an everyday and acceptable form of violence but that the attention to car crashes in Australian films suggests they figure as a moment of rupture in unspoken settler/indigenous violence.”

Australian films present hours of compelling evidence – movie crashes explode or unfold in distinctly Australian ways. The national flair comes across not just in the surrounding scenery but, more important, in the style.

Simpson explains that “Australia does not have glamorous, Hollywood-style celebrity car accidents”….

So begins this week’s Improbable Research column in The Guardian.