Every country must develop its own creation myth – a story for citizens to tell themselves so that they might pretend they are more than a collection of isolated strangers, claiming ownership of a land that should not be owned.

For some countries, this is an easier process than for others. Americans, for example, have the illusion of a revolutionary birth to cling to. They can forge their national identities via a myth that paints them as a throng of freedom-loving diehards, willing to sacrifice their lives for what they believe in. It is useful to them: it allows them to play make believe as a group of musket-toting, Constitution-writing saviours; warrior poets determined to resist tyranny in all its forms.

Of course, such a myth conveniently leaves out the First People who white Americans subjugated and murdered – those original custodians of the land who were massacred, and poisoned, and displaced. But that is exactly the myth’s worth. It helps turn a story of great pain and loss into a story of dynamic birth. Through it, white Americans cleanse themselves. Through it, they re-establish the boundaries of their national character: they transform from murderers into saints.

White Australians are lacking in the fire and fury of the Americans, and in the culture and history of the English.