New Australia

New Australia


In 1892, over 200 people left Australia to create "New Australia" a utopian socialist settlement in Paraguay.


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New Australia was a utopian socialist settlement in Paraguay founded by the Australian New Australian Movement. The colony was officially founded on 28 September 1893 as Colonia Nueva Australia and comprised 238 people.

The New Australia Co-operative Settlement Association, known short as the New Australia Movement, was founded by William Lane in 1892. Lane was a prominent figure in the Australian labor movement and founded Australia's first labor newspaper (the Queensland Worker) in 1890. A split in the Australian labor movement between those who went on to form the Australian Labor Party spurred Lane's intent to found a socialist utopia outside Australia. Lane's idea was to build a society based on:

A common-hold, rather than a common-wealth
A brotherhood of English-speaking Whites
Life marriage
Preservation of the 'Colour-Line'
Teetotalism
Communism

His concept of "common-hold" was that each member of a society should be able to withdraw their proportion of the society's wealth if they chose to leave.

Lane's was not the only influence urging Australians at the time toward a socialist community; utopian Edward Bellamy's Looking Backward was also popular with socialists and led many urban followers of Lane to expect that they would live in luxury in a socialist commune like that of Bellamy's fiction.