'Unparalleled in its breadth and scope, Sovereignty: Frontiers of Possibility brings together some of the freshest and most original writing on sovereignty being done today. Sovereignty’s many dimensions are approached from multiple perspectives and experiences. It is viewed globally as an international question; locally as an issue contested between Natives and settlers; and individually as survival in everyday life. Through all this diversity and across the many different national contexts from which the contributors write, the chapters in this collection address each other, staging a running conversation that truly internationalizes this most fundamental of political issues.
In the contemporary world, the age-old question of sovereignty remains a key terrain of political and intellectual contestation, for those whose freedom it promotes as well as for those whose freedom it limits or denies. The law is by no means the only language in which to think through, imagine, and enact other ways of living justly together. Working both within and beyond the confines of the law at once recognizes and challenges its thrall, opening up pathways to alternative possibilities, to other ways of determining and self-determining our collective futures. The contributors, Indigenous and non-Indigenous alike, converse across disciplinary boundaries, responding to critical developments within history, politics, anthropology, philosophy, and law. The ability of disciplines to connect with each other—and with experiences lived outside the halls of scholarship—is essential to understanding the past and how it enables and fetters the pursuit of justice in the present. Sovereignty: Frontiers of Possibility offers a reinvigorated politics that understands the power of sovereignty, explores strategies for resisting its lived effects, and imagines other ways of governing our inescapably coexistent communities.' [publisher's summary]
'The possibility of a new beginning was central to celebrations of the advent
of native title in Australia. A re-imagined history of white invasion
and settlement could, as then Prime Minister Paul Keating proclaimed,
provide the possibility for a new foundation “because after 200 years, we
will at last be building on the truth.” This “truth” was embodied in the
recognition of the presence of Indigenous communities, their laws, and
their dispossession. Unlike such British colonies as India or Nigeria, the
colonization of Australia proceeded on the basis that there were no Indigenous
people who held property rights and who therefore had any entitlement
to remain on the land or to govern. This is central to the logic of
settler colonialism, which erases the traces of Indigeneity such that settlers
replace Indigenous peoples, sovereignties, and communities on the land.
This logic has been reflected in Australian jurisprudence around settlement,
the origins of property, and the reception of British law.'
'Growing up in the Aboriginal community, the idea of Aboriginal sovereignty
became a concept that seemed inherent.'