“Those Who Have a Go, Get a Go”: Scott Morrison’s Pentecostal-Neoliberal Creed
Mark Jennings
Pig Melon︎︎︎, Saturday August 7, 6pm–8pm

In 2019, Australians re-elected a Coalition federal government helmed by a new leader who was something of an enigma—Scott “ScoMo” Morrison. Little was known about this seeming paradox of a man who combined an opaque, compassion-free resistance to asylum seekers as Minister for Immigration with a jovial, blokey bonhomie of a caring mate who once declared himself ambitious only to support the leadership of former PM Malcolm Turnbull. But it was known he was a Pentecostal, and journalists and academics rushed to posit Morrison’s faith as explanatory of the shape and results of his leadership.

This session has three aims: firstly, to explain what on earth Pentecostalism even is, particularly the Australian megachurch “brand” of this modern religious phenomenon Mr Morrison ascribes to. Second, we will posit that maybe another phenomenon, equally enigmatic, may help in understanding Morrison—namely neoliberalism, a perfect fit for one whose approach to governance has resulted in another nickname—Scotty from Marketing. Thirdly, hopefully, by the end of the session, we will be in a position to understand Morrison himself and the emerging shape of his leadership more clearly. 

Speaker biography
Dr Mark Jennings is a lecturer in Religious Studies at Trinity College Theological School and Continuing Education Coordinator at Wollaston Theological College.