Showing 1–12 of 36 results
The SonglinesArtist/Author: Chatwin, Bruce
‘Songlines’ or ‘Dreaming Tracks’ are what all Europeans call the labyrinth of invisible pathways that criss-cross Australia, tracks connecting communities and following ancient boundaries. To Aboriginals, they are the ‘Footprints of the Ancestors’; they are both intricate sources of personal identity and territorial markers. Bruce Chatwin provides a fascinating background to indigenous Australian life.
Along these lines, Aboriginals passed the songs which revealed the creation of the land and the secrets of its past. In this magical account, Chatwin recalls his travels across the length and breadth of Australia seeking to find the truth about the songs and unravel the mysteries of their stories. Bruce Chatwin has been able to trace a great deal about an Aboriginal culture as complex as it is different from our own. The conflict between the two ways of life mirrors that within ‘civilised’ man himself. Disputes over the right to excavate land that is sacred to wandering tribes highlight the importance of myth and instinct in the human psyche.
Kimberley History: People, Exploration and DevelopmentArtist/Author: Clement, Cathie, Jeffrey Gresham, Hamish McGlashan
This book is a significant contribution to our knowledge of the Kimberley’s early history.
In March, 2010 the Society held a one day seminar at the University of Western Australia entitled “Kimberley History: People, Exploration and Development”. Keynote speakers included Dr Mark Bin Bakar who talked on the Kimberley History from an Aboriginal perspective and Professor Mike Morwood who spoke on the Kimberley History from an archaeological perspective. Following these talks there were a series of talks outlining the early exploration and development of the Kimberley. In May 2012 the Proceedings Volume from this seminar was published containing 15 papers by different authors.
Buckley’s Chance: The Incredible True Story of William Buckley and How He Conquered a New WorldArtist/Author: Linnell, Gary
He fought Napoleon’s army and survived. He was sent to the gallows and escaped the noose. Now he is in chains and on his way to the other side of the world. What happens next will become one of the most remarkable survival stories in history. The 19th century has just begun. The world is at war. England, ruled by a mad king, is exiling thousands of criminals to an old land that has become its newest dumping ground.
One of those prisoners is William Buckley, barely 21, a former soldier sentenced to life for stealing two small pieces of cloth. He’s a giant for his times. But it’s not just his towering frame that sets him apart. It’s his desire for freedom that will make his story so unique – even in an era famous for outrageous acts of bravery and heroism.
On a moonlit night Buckley escapes and disappears into the Australian bush. Discovered and adopted by an aboriginal tribe who regard him as a ghost, he is initiated into their rich and complex culture. Given up for dead by his white captors, he will not be seen again for more than 30 years until he emerges one day…carrying a spear, dressed in animal skins and having forgotten the English language.
Buckley’s Chance is a profound journey into a turning point in history where cultures clash, bitter rivals go to war and the body count mounts. It’s also the story of a man who refuses to be held down. A man prepared to defy all odds and take a chance. Buckley’s chance!
The Little Red Yellow Black Book: An introduction to Indigenous Australia (Fourth edition)Artist/Author: AIATSIS, with Bruce Pascoe
Originally published in 1994, The Little Red Yellow Black Book has established itself as the perfect starting point for those who want to learn about the rich cultures and histories of Australia’s First Peoples. Written from an Indigenous perspective, this highly illustrated and accessible introduction covers a range of topics from history, culture and the Arts, through to activism and reconciliation. In this fourth edition, readers will learn about some of the significant contributions that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have made, and continue to make, to the Australian nation. Common stereotypes will be challenged, and the many struggles and triumphs that we’ve experienced as we’ve navigated through our shared histories will be revealed. Readers will also learn about some of the key concepts that underpin Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander worldviews including concepts such as the Dreaming, the significance of Ancestral Heroes and Country.
The Little Red Yellow Black Book is for readers of all backgrounds and provides an opportunity to discover more about the diverse, dynamic and continuing cultures of Australia’s First Peoples.
Salt: Selected Stories and EssaysArtist/Author: Pascoe, Bruce
A collection of stories and essays by the award-winning author of Dark Emu, showcasing his shimmering genius across a lifetime of work.
This volume of Bruce Pascoe’s best and most celebrated stories and essays, collected here for the first time, traverses his long career and explores his enduring fascination with Australia’s landscape, culture and history.
Featuring new fiction alongside Pascoe’s most revered and thought-provoking nonfiction – including from his modern classic Dark Emu – Salt distils the intellect, passion and virtuosity of his work. It’s time all Australians know the range and depth of this most marvellous of our writers.
About the Author: Bruce Pascoe is an award-winning writer and a Yuin, Bunurong and Tasmanian man. He is a board member of First Languages Australia and Professor of Indigenous Knowledge at the University of Technology Sydney. In 2018 he was named Dreamtime Person of the Year for his contribution to Indigenous culture.
Mallee Country: Land, People, HistoryArtist/Author: Broome, Richard, Charles Fahey, Andrea Gaynor, Katie Holmes
Mallee Country tells the powerful history of mallee lands and people across southern Australia from Deep Time to the present. Carefully shaped and managed by Aboriginal people for over 50,000 years, mallee country was dramatically transformed by settlers, first with sheep and rabbits, then by flattening and burning the mallee to make way for wheat. Government backed settlement schemes devastated lives and country, but some farmers learnt how to survive the droughts, dust storms, mice, locusts and salinity – as well as the vagaries of international markets – to become some of Australia’s most resilient agriculturalists. In mallee country, innovation and tenacity have been neighbours to hardship and failure.
Mallee Country is a story of how land and people shape each other. It is the story of how a landscape once derided by settlers as a ‘howling wilderness’ covered in ‘dismal scrub’ became home to citizens who delighted in mallee fauna and flora, and fought to conserve it for future generations. And it is the story of the dreams, sweat and sorrows of people who face an uncertain future of depopulation and climate change with creativity and hope.
The Gulf Country: The Story of People and Place in Outback QueenslandArtist/Author: Martin, Richard J
The story of the resilient people who make their home in Australia’s far north, from the ‘wild time’ of the frontier days to the present.
With its great rivers, grassy plains and mangrove-fringed coastline, Queensland’s remote Gulf Country is rich and fertile land. It has long been home to Aboriginal people and, since the 1860s, also to Europeans and to settlers with Chinese, Japanese and Afghan ancestry.
Richard J. Martin tells the story of a century-and-a-half of exploration and colonisation, the growth of cattle and mining industries, and the impact of Christian missionaries and Indigenous activism, through to the present day. He acknowledges the brutal realities of violence and dispossession, as well as the challenges of life on the land in northern Australia.
Drawing on extensive interviews with people across the Gulf Country, this is a lively and colourful account of tight-knit communities, relationships across cultures and resilience in the face of adversity.
Australia’s Original Languages: An IntroductionArtist/Author: Dixon, R. M. W.
An introduction to Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait languages that explains their distinctive features accessibly for readers who have no previous experience with learning another language, and shows how language reflects traditional culture.
‘A must read for all who would like to understand the languages and culture of Indigenous Australians.’ Dr Ernie Grant, Elder of the Jirrbal nation
When Captain Cook landed at Botany Bay, about 250 distinct languages were spoken across the continent. Yet Australian Indigenous languages actually share many common features.
Bob Dixon has been working with elders to research Australian languages for half a century, and he draws on this deep experience to outline the common features. He provides a straightforward introduction to the sounds, word building, and wide-ranging vocabulary of Indigenous languages, and highlights distinctive grammatical features. He explains how language is related to culture, including kinship relationships, gender systems, and naming conventions.
With examples from over 30 languages and anecdotes illustrating language use, and avoiding technical terms, Australia’s Original Languages is the indispensable starting point for anyone interested in learning about Aboriginal and Torres Strait languages.
‘Written in an accessible, easy to read style, Professor Dixon’s new book is an informative and entertaining introduction to Australia’s “original” languages.’ Dr Joe Blythe, Department of Linguistics, Macquarie University
First Footprints: The Epic Story of the First AustraliansArtist/Author: Cane, Scott
First Footprints tells the extraordinary story of the Aboriginal people of Australia. How they made their way out of Africa 60,000 years ago, and how they survived across this vast continent, from the harsh deserts of the inland to the glaciers of southern Tasmania. With photos from the ABC TV series of the same name.Some 60,000 years ago, a small group of people landed on Australia’s northern coast. They were the first oceanic mariners and this great southern land was their new home. Gigantic mammals roamed the plains and enormous crocodiles, giant snakes and goannas nestled in the estuaries and savannahs.
First Footprints tells the epic story of Australia’s Aboriginal people. It is a story of ancient life on the driest continent on earth through the greatest environmental changes experienced in human history: ice ages, extreme drought and inundating seas. It is chronicled through astonishing archaeological discoveries, ancient oral histories and the largest and oldest art galleries on earth. Australia’s first inhabitants were the first people to believe in an afterlife, cremate their dead, engrave representations of the human face, and depict human sound and emotion. They created new technologies, designed ornamentation, engaged in trade, and crafted the earliest documents of war. Ultimately, they developed a sustainable society based on shared religious tradition and far-reaching social networks across the length and breadth of Australia.
The First Wave: Exploring Early Coastal Contact History in AustraliaArtist/Author: Dooley, Gillian, Danielle Clode (Editors)
The European maritime explorers who first visited the bays and beaches of Australia brought with them diverse assumptions about the inhabitants of the country, most of them based on sketchy or non-existent knowledge, contemporary theories like the idea of the noble savage, and an automatic belief in the superiority of European civilisation. Mutual misunderstanding was almost universal, whether it resulted in violence or apparently friendly transactions.
Written for a general audience, The First Wave brings together a variety of contributions from thought-provoking writers, including both original research and creative work. Our contributors explore the dynamics of these early encounters, from Indigenous cosmological perspectives and European history of ideas, from representations in art and literature to the role of animals, food and fire in mediating first contact encounters, and Indigenous agency in exploration and shipwrecks.
The First Wave includes poetry by Yankunytjatjara Aboriginal poet Ali Cobby Eckermann, fiction by Miles Franklin award-winning Noongar author Kim Scott and Danielle Clode, and an account of the arrival of Christian missionaries in the Torres Strait Islands by Torres Strait political leader George Mye.
Into the Heart of Tasmania: A Search For Human AntiquityArtist/Author: Taylor, Rebe
This book is a winner of multiple literary awards.
In 1908 English gentleman, Ernest Westlake, packed a tent, a bicycle and forty tins of food and sailed to Tasmania. On mountains, beaches and in sheep paddocks he collected over 13,000 Aboriginal stone tools. Westlake believed he had found the remnants of an extinct race whose culture was akin to the most ancient Stone Age Europeans. But in the remotest corners of the island Westlake encountered living Indigenous communities.
Into the Heart of Tasmania tells a story of discovery and realisation. One man’s ambition to rewrite the history of human culture inspires an exploration of the controversy stirred by Tasmanian Aboriginal history. It brings to life how Australian and British national identities have been fashioned by shame and triumph over the supposed destruction of an entire race. To reveal the beating heart of Aboriginal Tasmania is to be confronted with a history that has never ended.
Rattling Spears: A History of Indigenous Australian ArtArtist/Author: McLean, Ian
Large, bold and colourful, Indigenous Australian art has made an indelible impression on the contemporary imagination. But it is controversial, dividing the stakeholders from those who smell a scam. Whether the artists are victims or victors, there is no denying their impact in the media and on the art world and collectors worldwide. How did Australian art become the most successful indigenous form in the world? How did its artists escape the ethnographic and souvenir markets to become players in an art world to which they had previously been denied access? Finely illustrated, and now available in paperback, this full historical account makes you question everything you were taught about contemporary art.
‘Provides what instructors of indigenous Australian art have long been waiting for: a textbook on the genre. Though one can find a multitude of museum and exhibition catalogues and books on the art of specific regions of Australia, this is the first book to provide comprehensive coverage of the unfolding of indigenous art across time and place, across styles and borders, and across cultures . . . Clearly organized and well written, the content is theoretical and factual, and McLean supports the discussion with excellent illustrations. One of the most important publications on the topic to date. Highly recommended.’ — Choice