Are you part of the non-Indigenous majority? Have you had too little contact with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people? Do you feel that you do not fully comprehend their worldview, but wish you could? Is entrenched Aboriginal disadvantage eating away at your sense of Australia as a fair and united country? Do you still possess the recollection of your first encounter with an Aboriginal person, and wonder why it remains so enduring? Are you troubled by the time being taken to achieve constitutional recognition and frustrated that an apparently simple issue has become so vexed? If these questions resonate in your mind, you have much in common with many Australians and may benefit from reading these books.
Kevin Bell reviews 'It’s our country' by Megan Davis and Marcia Langton, and 'The Forgotten People' edited by Damien Freeman and Shireen Morris
It’s Our Country: Indigenous arguments for meaningful constitutional recognition and reform
edited by Megan Davis and Marcia Langton
Melbourne University Press, $29.99 pb, 206 pp, 9780522869934
The Forgotten People: Liberal and conservative approaches to recognising Indigenous peoples
edited by Damien Freeman and Shireen Morris
Melbourne University Press, $29.99 pb, 200 pp, 9780522869637
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Kevin Bell is a justice of the Supreme Court of Victoria and former president of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal. As a barrister, he frequently represented Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in native title claims, especially in the Kimberley in Western Australia.
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