On the Dark Emu debate

Stephen Bennetts reviews Farmers or Hunter-gatherers? by Petter Sutton and Keryn Walshe
The ABR Podcast 04 August 2021

On the Dark Emu debate

Stephen Bennetts reviews Farmers or Hunter-gatherers? by Petter Sutton and Keryn Walshe
The ABR Podcast 04 August 2021

Bennetts


Few books have had as decisive an impact on the history of Indigenous Australian land management as Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu. And yet, as Peter Sutton and Keryn Walshe argue in Farmers or Hunter-gatherers?, the foundations upon which Pascoe builds his account of Indigenous agriculture may be shakier than first thought. In his review of Sutton and Walshe’s book, writer and anthropologist Stephen Bennetts assesses not only their criticisms of Pascoe’s claims, but also the surrounding controversy that has turned a scholarly debate into another theatre in a culture war. What this political furore threatens to obscure is the long tradition of Australian anthropological research that has been essential to the legal restoration of Indigenous land ownership.


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