Tonight at Kardinia Park, Geelong, Adam Goodes returns to the field of play.
The AFL field of play has been at the centre of a much larger field of play since Adam Goodes - 2014 Australian of The Year and twice winner of the prestigious Brownlow Medal - had the temerity to point out the young spectator who abused him as "an ape". This, during the 2013 AFL Indigenous Round, no less.
Watch his unedited news conference from the following day here
to the Yuendumu Sports Weekend ( article here ) ....
Since then Goodes has been booed while playing and denigrated in the media by those who like to say "I'm not a racist, but...".
In May this year, Goodes celebrated kicking a goal - again during the AFL Indigenous Round - by dancing his black pride at the opposition. The racist response immediately went up another notch.
Finally, last weekend, after Goodes under pressure took leave from The Swans, many Australians protested for him and against racial abuse : from Gumatj clan dancers at the Garma Festival, with Goodes' 37 painted on their backs a Swans red V on their chests...
to Sydney and beyond...
below : Kavisha Mazzella (front left) and Rachael Maza (centre) join the war dance flash mob in Federation Square. (774 ABC Melbourne: Clare Rawlinson)
In 1976, FIAPCE, the Fosterville Institute of Applied & Progressive Cultural Experience sketched a poster design with the text
? Why NOT footballers-for Social-Reform ?
At that time, the question made rhetorical sense, but it seemed odd and unlikely.
In 2015, thanks to the courage of players such as Nicky Winmar, Michael Long and Adam Goodes, to the institutional efforts of the AFL, in particular under the leadership of Andrew Demetriou, and the advocacy of journalists such as Martin Flanagan and Gerard Whateley it no longer seems a strange or unlikely leadership role.
collection: Ian Potter Museum of Art, Melbourne University
Now, focus moves to the conduct of the crowd.
? Why NOT Theatre-of-the-Actors-of Regard-for-Social-Reform ?
"Well, the Aboriginal footy star Adam Goodes will take to the field on Saturday night when his team Sydney plays Geelong. It will be Goodes first match since he was persistently booed by supporters of the opposing team two weeks ago.
And people all around Australia will be watching to see not how the teams perform but how the crowd behaves.
For this past fortnight, the booing of Adam Goodes has been the subject of heated debate, as if the treatment of this one sportsman lays bare the soul of the entire nation."
Michael Cathcart on 'Books and Arts'
ABC.RN, 7 August 2015
Introduction to : What role do the arts play in the national debate around racism?
detailA Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...