3 October 2022
Sweatshop Acquires White Nation & Against Paranoid Nationalism
Sweatshop Literacy Movement Inc. has secured the world rights to The Racial Politics of Australian Multiculturalism by distinguished anthropologist, Professor Ghassan Hage. The book is slated for release in April 2023, and will include new editions of Hage’s seminal publications, White Nation, which will soon celebrate its 25th anniversary, and Against Paranoid Nationalism, which will be celebrating its 20th anniversary. The Racial Politics of Australian Multiculturalism will also feature Hage’s later writings, providing a definitive collection on the complexities of racial diversity from one of Australia’s leading intellectuals and cultural critics.
Ghassan Hage is Professor of Anthropology and Social Theory at the University of Melbourne and a Senior Research Fellow at the Max Planck Institute of Anthropology in Germany. He is the author and editor of many works, including most recently, The Diasporic Condition. He said, “I can’t really think of any publishing house more suited for the republication of these texts. At Sweatshop there is a whole generation of people who appreciate White Nation as an inheritance and I appreciate how traces of it are present in their work.”
As part of the agreement with Sweatshop, Hage has donated his fee to establish a fellowship for First Nations writers, which will be initiated in June 2023. The fellowship, valued at $10,000.00, will provide two emerging First Nations writers with funding, mentors and resources to develop a debut non-fiction manuscript while in-residence at Sweatshop. Hage said that donating his fee to this cause was crucial — “a way of forging lasting relations that begin to counteract the continual harm caused by our ongoing colonial inhabitance of this land.” His decision ties into a broader solidarity movement with First Nations communities that Hage describes as a “reparative mode of existence”.
The founding director of Sweatshop, Dr Michael Mohammed Ahmad, described the publication of The Racial Politics of Australian Multiculturalism as necessary and urgent. “In the aftermath of the Christchurch massacre, the global Black Lives Matter movement, and the rise of anti-Asian violence as a result of Covid-19, Ghassan Hage’s writings on racism, White supremacy and nationalism have become more relevant and essential than ever. As the publisher, we consider it a tremendous responsibility and honour to ensure that some of Ghassan’s most important and iconic works will be available and affordable for generations to come.”
In order to deliver the monumental task at hand, Sweatshop has engaged a team of award-winning Arab-Australian artists, scholars, editors and organisers, including Dr Randa Abdel-Fattah, Dr Paula Abood, Dr Jumana Bayeh, Dr Sarah Ayoub, Amani Haydar, Kawsar Ali and Lena Nahlous.
On behalf of the collective, Abdel-Fattah, who is the author of several award-winning books, expressed the importance of preserving and celebrating Hage’s work: “Take intellectually exciting and searingly insightful, scholarly but grounded in community, daringly thought-provoking but generous, ground-breaking and yet still timely, and you have an idea why Ghassan Hage remains one of the most treasured scholars of our time.”
The Racial Politics of Australian Multiculturalism by Ghassan Hage will be published by Sweatshop Literacy Movement in April 2023, and distributed in print and digital formats through NewSouth Books. The publication and subsequent fellowship are proudly supported by Diversity Arts Australia.