A Dangerous Disease to Catch: Overseas Students, Transnational Policing and the Passing of an Idea

  • Jon Piccini
Part of the Palgrave Studies in the History of Social Movements book series (PSHSM)


During the 1970s, Australian Social Movements splintered, declined in numbers and force, and eventually, in the face of a hostile New Right, collapsed. This narrative is clear-cut, but ignores the interesting and important activism of overseas students, particularly those from Malaysia and Singapore, during the period. This last chapter moves the spotlight away from Australian students, and onto the “temporary transnationals” in their midst, who have been almost entirely ignored by other authors. It looks at how overseas students became politicised and sought out alliances with their Australian counterparts, as well as how this led to co-operation between South East Asian governments and Australia in thwarting what was seen as a challenge to bilateral relations. Finally, how and why the rise of this movement coincided with what could be problematically termed “the end of the Sixties” and of the global revolutionary ideal will be explored.


Overseas Students South East Asian Governments Malaysian Students University Of New South Wales (UNSW) South East Asia Treaty Organization (SEATO) 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jon Piccini
    • 1
  1. 1.University of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia

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