AustLit logo
y separately published work icon Oceania periodical issue  
Issue Details: First known date: 1994... vol. 65 no. 2 December 1994 of Oceania est. 1930 Oceania
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.

AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Discusses the issue of the supposed absence of historical consciousness among traditionally oriented Aborigines. Review of J. Hill and T. Turner's attempts to define the difference between myth and history; Discourse on some narratives of colonization from Western New South Wales; Analysis of some Aboriginal stories about Captain Cook.' (Introduction)


* Contents derived from the 1994 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
Aboriginal Histories, Aboriginal Myths : An Introduction, Jeremy Beckett , single work criticism

'Until the 1970s, Aboriginal people in Australia were virtually without a voice. Administrators, missionaries, scientists, novelists, spoke of them, and occasionally for them, with such authority as to make a native voice seem unnecessary, even impossible. It was as though Aborigines were incapable of articulating their hopes and their history. The last twenty five or so years, whatever their disappointments, have seen the creation of a public space within which Aboriginal people could speak to other Australians and to one another. The faces of several Aboriginal spokesperson; have become familiar to television viewers, and Aboriginal writers, painters, and playwrights have found a sizeable audience, Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal. But an older and less educated generation has also been able through the use of a tape recorder and an editor to collect their memories and tell their stories to the world at large. Sally Morgan's My Place (1987) tells how a young Aboriginal graduate of the 1970s, enabled her mother and grandmother to confront their lives and articulate their Aboriginality. . . ' (Introduction)

(p. 97-115)
The Dreaming, Human Agency and Inscriptive Practice, Alan Rumsey , single work criticism

'Discusses the Australian Aboriginal forms of social memory. Analysis of its implications in the attempt to distinguish myth and history, orality and literacy; Examination of the historical consciousness in aboriginal Australia; Argument that the dreaming is one instance of a general mode of orientation.' (Publication abstract)

(p. 116-130)
Narratives of the Encounter at Ntaria, Diane Austin-Broos , single work criticism

'In the month of July, 1876, Western Aranda resident in the area marked out by Ltalaltuma, Emalkna, Ljaba and Roulbmaulbma — the area west of Uruna now called Missionary Plain, and bordered to the north by the Western MacDonnells — may have sighted the first European settlers on their lands. It was during this time that a forward party from a Lutheran mission group set out from Dalhousie Springs, some 285 miles south, to inspect the mission lease along either side of the Finke River complex (Bowman n.d.:68-9). It was about a year later that the main party arrived via Owen Spring, the first cattle lease established in Central Australia. Initially they travelled to the area south of Jalpalpa, now known as Glen Helen. Then the Lutherans travelled south, to a point on the Finke below Ntaria waterhole. They sank a well and determined to build their community there; at the place they would call 'Hermannsburg'. ' (Introduction)

(p. 131-150)
`Narratives of Survival in the Post-colonial North', Francesca Merlan , single work criticism

Scholars have recently paid more attention to narratives of colonial contact in Australia, as elsewhere (cf. Hill 1988). Western elements and characters (such as Captain Cook) have been widely documented in Australian Aboriginal narratives which nevertheless are clearly not close accounts of past events. This has promoted reconsideration of the distinction between 'myth' and 'history'. If we follow Turner's (1988) suggestion that myth is the formulation of 'essential' properties of social experience in terms of 'generic events', while 'history' is concerned with the level of 'particular relations among particular events', we need not restrict ourselves to seeing myth as chattel for a social order distinct from western influence. In the paper I examine two stories of cultural and physical survival from the Katherine area, Northern Territory, and seek to identify in them fundamental themes and enduring narrative precipitates of social experience lived in intense awareness of colonial and post-colonial relationships between Aborigines and whites.' (Publication abstract)

(p. 151-174)
Ned Kelly Died for Our Sins, Deborah Bird Rose , single work criticism

'From time to time scholars have posed the question: why have Australian Aborigines not developed cargo cults with the same intensity and flamboyance as their Melanesian neighbours? This discussion evades the implications that Aborigines may have been negligent in their cultural production of responses to colonisation, and seeks to engage with some of the responses some Aboriginal people actually have made to colonisation. Focussing on stories of Ned Kelly, and contrasting them with stories of Captain Cook, the suggestion here is that Aboriginal people's search for a moral European communicates the challenging and provocative possibility that coloniser and colonised can share a moral history and thus can fashion a just society. ' (Publication abstract)

(p. 175-186)
[Review Essay] Stars of Tagai : The Torres Strait Islanders, Judith Fitzpatrick , single work

'This book is a welcome addition to the limited field of publications about Torres Strait Islanders and their history. Its greatest contribution originates from the chronicle of the Islanders' light for autonomy, control over their environment and recently, recognition as a distinct indigenous population within Australia. Publication of the manuscript was timed to coincide with the landmark Australian High Court decision (1992)in favour of the Murray Islander land claim recognising customary title, under common law, to their home island in Eastern Torres Strait. As a sociologist with many years experience in historical analysis on the region and notable contributions to the ongoing critique of protectionist policies in Queensland, the author shows a commendable dedication in her ardent documentation of the Torres Strait saga.' (Introduction)

(p. 188-189)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Last amended 17 Nov 2017 07:25:41