Posted by: nancycurteman | June 10, 2010

Ned Kelly, His Values and His Legacy

Is Ned Kelly  a symbol of what it means to be Australian? As Susanna Duffy  puts it: “Ned is part of the mythology of ‘the bush’—the perceived cradle of mateship, equality, and the masculine virtue of fearless strength.” He may have been a bushranger, but he was also a self-educated man and a philosophical Robin Hood who spent much of his life as a ferocious defender of the oppressed. Ned Kelly, nicknamed Sunshine by his father, expressed this goal in words attributed to him: “If my lips teach the public that men are made mad by bad treatment…my life will not be entirely thrown away.” Ned Kelly – bushranger

Perhaps Ned Kelly is the origin of many of the virtues the world attributes to Australians—courage, persistence, openness, tolerance, and patriotism. Many also perceive Australians as having a strong work ethic, being friendly, fun-loving and always ready for a good party. Not a bad list of National traits.

Photo: elflady


  1. The more I learn about this guy, the more I like him. Of course, we only get the highlights from history.


  2. Excellent National traits!


  3. Hi Nancy!

    This is just a “hello,” since I read your comment at Nancy Hatch’s blog. And yes, I am very appreciative that Don Erlich was willing to write a guest post!

    I’ll catch up with your blog posts when they arrive in my email inbox. Looking forward to reading them, and to seeing you on Twitter.

    Take care,


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