Tag: Aboriginal

After 140 years, researchers have rediscovered an important Aboriginal ceremonial ground in East Gippsland

Reading time: 5 minutes
After 140 years, researchers have rediscovered an Aboriginal ceremonial ground in Victoria’s East Gippsland. The site was host to the last young men’s initiation ceremony of the Gunaikurnai back in 1884, witnessed by the anthropologist A.W. Howitt.

Howitt’s field notes, combined with contemporary Gunaikurnai knowledge of their country, has led to the rediscovery. The site is located on public land, on the edge of the small fishing village of Seacombe. Its precise location had been lost following decades of colonial suppression of Gunaikurnai ritual and religious practices.

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90 years ago, Yorta Yorta leader William Cooper petitioned the king for Aboriginal representation in parliament

Reading time: 4 minutes
Ninety years ago, Yorta Yorta leader William Cooper dreamed of Aboriginal people being represented in the Commonwealth parliament. In August 1933, he set about petitioning the British king, George V. The key demand was for: a member of parliament, of our own blood or white men known to have studied our needs and to be in sympathy with our race, to represent us in the Federal Parliament.

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Recognising the warriors

Reading time: 7 minutes
It was a sudden and unexpected announcement. Late last week, the chairman of the Australian War Memorial, Brendan Nelson, declared the governing council had decided to develop a much broader, a much deeper depiction and presentation of the violence committed against Indigenous people, initially by British, then by pastoralists, then by police, and then by Aboriginal militia.

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The Black War

Reading time: 10 minutes
In the heat of commemoration of Australians’ involvement in the first world war, it’s timely to remember their participation in the frontier wars in the 19th century. As Nicholas Clements, the author of a new book on the best known frontier war, the Black War in Tasmania in the 1820s, points out, the death rate among the colonists was half that of Australians in the first world war, much higher than the death rate in the second world war and the casualties affected almost every family in Tasmania.

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