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By Linda Westphalen

Examines existence background writing through Australian Aboriginal ladies within the context of negotiations approximately one's prestige and claims to nation. This booklet makes use of a methodological mix of literary research, historical past and anthropology to attract out the distinct cultural heritages held in palimpsest inside of texts.

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Additional resources for An Anthropological and Literary Study of Two Aboriginal Women’s Life Histories: The Impacts of Enforced Child Removal and Policies of Assimilation

Example text

The text of this book also grew, in part, from my own history. In 1993, I was a teacher in a Lutheran private school in South Australia. In January of that year, I completed an Honours thesis on the autobiographical writing of Maxine Hong Kingston and Maya Angelou, exploring their positions as both women lifehistorians and as members of 'marginalised' cultures in the United States (Westphalen 1993). Once I had decided to continue my studies, I developed an interest in First Nations writers of North America.

Briefly, the Intervention was a reaction to the Ampe Akelyernemane Meke Mekorle 'Little Children are Sacred' report (Wild and Anderson 2007) which 'confirmed what many Aboriginal people had been saying for years: that many of their communities had broken down to the point that widespread violence, suicide, alcohol and other substance abuse, and the abuse of children had become a way of life' (Maddison 2009a: 484). After initial optimism, the Intervention was opposed by Indigenous communities, as the measures adopted necessitated a suspension of the Racial Discrimination Act (1975) and incorporated significant surveillance and control of Indigenous people and communities by nonIndigenous authorities (Maddison 2009a: 484-5).

There are therefore varying specificities in the relationships that can be drawn between people, places and events in the texts and the reading audience, depending on who they are. As Clarke notes, 'an individual's connection to the Dreaming provided the basis of his or her identity' (1995: 145). The great variations in Dreaming Stories, both across geographical localities and within specific Country, relates to the locations where people are born and live, as well as to the dynamic relationship that they had, and have, with the land.

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