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What is Lunar New Year and how it is celebrated in Australia?

Source: AAP

Lunar New Year, or Spring Festival, is an entrenched part of Australian culture. Sydney’s version, for example, is said to be the largest celebration of its type outside Asia. What are its origins? And how is it celebrated in Australia?  

This year, Lunar New Year Day will be on February 1st and 2022 is the Year of the Tiger. Dr. Pan Wang is a Senior Lecturer in Chinese and Asian Studies at the University of New South Wales.  The Spring Festival lasts for fifteen days until the Lantern Festival.

According to Wang,Lunar New Year is the beginning of a lunar calendar year and it's celebrated in China and in other east Asian countries like Korea, Vietnam, Japan, Chinese diasporas and many other countries like Australia. And it has a history of up to 4,000 years, starting from the Xia or Shang dynasty.


Highlights

  • Lunar New Year celebrations in Australia are a great opportunity for people from all over the world to learn about Chinese, south-eastern and eastern Asian cultures at large.  
  • Lunar New year is a time to pay respect to one’s ancestors.
  • Tiger symbolises strength and getting things under control — a needed shift for the globe as humanity grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Listen to the podcast:

What is Lunar New Year and how it is celebrated in Australia?
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"Tiger represents leadership, authority, power and strength. We need to acquire the power and strength of the tiger, especially after the pandemic. Things are still unpredictable. You know, speaking of the pandemic at this stage. We've been going through so many waves of the pandemic in different countries, and if we can get things in control like the tiger and be brave, face that, to lead the pandemic to be able to cope with that, and strengthen our immunity, strengthen ourselves."

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