Dr. Stefanie Affeldt

Exception or Exemption? The Broome Pearling Industry and the White Australia Policy


Stefanie Affeldt has studied Social Economics at the University of Hamburg and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from the Macquarie University, Sydney. Subsequently, she did her post-graduate studies in Cultural and Social History at the University of Essex and obtained her doctorate in (Historical) Sociology from the University of Hamburg.

Her most recent publication, Consuming Whiteness. Australian Racism and the ›White Sugar‹ Campaign, examines the entanglement of the political history of Australian nation building with the economic, cultural, and social processes of the time and investigates into the history of migration, mechanism of inclusion/exclusion of potential new settlers and questions of socio-political organisation, with a particular interest in the role of mass media and popular culture in the dissemination and everyday (re)production of ideology.

Her current socio-historical research project ›Exception or Exemption‹ discusses the reception of ›white Australia‹ in Broome and the perception of Broome in ›white Australia‹ by considering the multicultural situation in the Australian northwest in the late nineteenth to early twentieth century and examining the local upheavals caused by the envisaged (re)construction of a ›white pearling industry‹. What role did the ›white Australia policy‹ play in one of the remotest locations of the continent and what where the implications for its inhabitants with their multitude of national backgrounds? And how was the exceptional situation of Broome’s industry reflected within the widespread discourse of ›white Australia‹? Furthermore, ›Exception or Exemption‹ expands the scope of the investigation by a comparative analysis with the contemporaneous ›whitening process‹ in the sugar industry of Queensland.



Email: s.affeldt@gmx.net

Website: www.stefanieaffeldt.net



Academic Education

2005 –  2008                      

Social Economic studies, Department for Economics and Politics, University of Hamburg, Germany
2007 – 2008  Bachelor of Arts in Sociology, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia
2008 – 2009 Master of Arts in Cultural and Social History, University of Essex, Colchester, United Kingdom
2011 – 2013 Doctoral Thesis Consuming Whiteness. Australian Racism and the ›White Sugar‹ Campaign, Department of Social  Economics, University of Hamburg, Germany
(Oct. 2014: summa cum laude, Doctor rerum politicarum)


Academic Awards

2008                          R.W. Connell Prize for outstanding performance in the Bachelor studies, awarded by the Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia
2016 Dissertation Prize for my doctoral thesis Consuming Whiteness, awarded by the Association for Australian Studies


Recent Employment History

2014–2017            Visiting Lecturer
Leuphana University, Lüneburg, Germany
Seminars include:
• ›Social Documentary Photography as Societal Analysis‹
• ›Stereotyping Down Under. Class, Gender, Nation, and Race in (Post)Colonial Australia‹ [in English]
• The ›Woman‹ and the ›Ape‹ – The Intersectionality of Gender and Race in the Discourse of Simianization [in English]
since 2015
Board Member
Finance Referent, Membership Administration and Social Media Manager
Gesellschaft der Freunde und Förderer des Fachbereichs Sozialökonomie, University of Hamburg


Professional Affiliations


  • Association for Australian Studies | Gesellschaft für Australienstudien
  • German Sociological Association | Deutsche Gesellschaft für Soziologie
  • Gesellschaft der Freunde und Förderer des Fachbereichs Sozialökonomie, University of Hamburg
  • Macquarie University Alumni Network
  • University of Essex Alumni Network


Selected Publications


  • »Who are the Aborigines?« The Western Images of Indigenous Australians. In: The Intervention and its Consequences, ed. by Elisabeth Bähr, Barbara Schmidt-Haberkamp. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing (in print).
  • »The Burden of ›White Sugar‹«. Producing and Consuming Whiteness in Australia. In: Studia Anglica Posnaniensia. An International Review of English Studies (peer-reviewed), 48, 2016, 2 (under review).
  • Exterminating the Brute. Racism and Sexism in ›King Kong‹. In: Simianization. Apes, Class, Gender, and Race (Racism Analysis | Yearbook 6), ed. by Wulf D. Hund, Charles Mills, Silvia Sebastiani. Berlin [et al.]: Lit 2015, pp. 139-169.
  • Consuming Whiteness. Australian Racism and the ›White Sugar‹ Campaign. Berlin [et al.]: Lit 2014, 608 pp.
  • ›White Sugar‹ against ›Yellow Peril‹. Consuming for National Identity and Racial Purity. In: On Whiteness, ed. by Nicky Falkof and Oliver Cashman-Brown. Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press 2012, pp. 3-13.
  • ›White‹ Nation – ›White‹ Angst. A Literary Invasion of Australia. In: Racism and Modernity. Festschrift for Wulf D. Hund, ed. by Sabine Ritter, Iris Wigger. Berlin: [et al.] Lit 2011, pp. 222-235.
  • A Paroxysm of Whiteness. ›White‹ Labour, ›White‹ Nation and ›White‹ Sugar in Australia. In: Wages of Whiteness & Racist Symbolic Capital (Racism Analysis | Yearbook 1), ed. by Wulf D. Hund, Jeremy Krikler, David Roediger. Berlin [et. al]: Lit 2010, pp. 99-131.

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Letzte Änderung: 19.06.2017
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