December 2016, issue no. 387

Billy Griffiths reviews 'Rattling Spears: A history of indigenous Australian' art by Ian McLean

Billy Griffiths

This beautifully illustrated book explores the ways in which Indigenous Australians have responded to invasion through art. ‘Where colonists saw a gulf,’ writes art historian Ian ...More

Kevin Bell reviews 'It’s our country' by Megan Davis and Marcia Langton, and 'The Forgotten People' edited by Damien Freeman and Shireen Morris

Kevin Bell

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 ...

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Timothy Neale reviews 'A Handful of Sand: The Gurindji struggle, after the walk-off' by Charlie Ward

Timothy Neale

The iconography of Indigenous land rights in Australia is fundamentally deceptive. Take, for example, the famous photograph of Prime Minister Gough Whitlam pouring red ...

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Richard Martin reviews 'Native Title from Mabo to Akiba: A vehicle for change and empowerment?'

Richard Martin

Since the passage of the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) and related law reform, legal rights and interests in a significant and growing estate have been transferred to Abori More

2016 Calibre Essay Prize (Winner): 'The Great Red Whale'

Michael Winkler

The history of my onomastic apprehension and misapprehension about the big thing in the middle of Australia: It is called Ayers Rock. No, it is ...

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Josephine Taylor reviews 'The Bauhinia Tree' by Kankawa Nagarra Olive Knight

Josephine Taylor

Kankawa Nagarra Olive Knight is a leader in the Wangkatjungka community, south-east of Fitzroy Crossing in the Kimberley. For The Bauhinia Tree, her eventful seventy-year life story was recorded by Terri-ann White, then 'transcribed and refined' by White and Kankawa Knight. While the material has been edited to remove hesitations and interventions, the oral ... More

#1 Martin Thomas reads ‘“Because it’s your country”: Bringing Back the Bones to West Arnhem Land'

In 2013 we published Martin Thomas's Calibre Prize-winning essay ‘“Because it’s your country”: Bringing Back the Bones to West Arnhem Land'. This powerful story of the repatri More

Ruth A. Morgan reviews 'The Australian Archaeologist's Book of Quotations' edited by Mike Smith and Billy Griffiths

Ruth A. Morgan

The Australian Archaeologist’s Book of Quotations is a veritable time-traveller’s guide for making sense of a continent, a nation, and its people. The editors, archaeologist Mike Smith and historian Billy Griffiths, have served up a smorgasbord of archaeological appetisers, with a feast of pithy insights into how Australians are coming to terms with ancie ... More

'Sound Bridges: A Profile of Gurrumul' by Felicity Plunkett

Felicity Plunkett
In April 2011 the Australian edition of Rolling Stone featured a cover photo of Yolngu multi-instrumentalist and singer Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu ... More

The Drawing Master: Andrew Sayers' 'Aboriginal Artists of the Nineteenth Century'

Tim Bonyhady & Melinda Hinkson

Many good books are published about Australian art, but few change the way we see and understand it. When Andrew Sayers’ ​Aboriginal Artists of the Nineteenth Century appeared in August 1994, it immediately did that, as the critic Bruce James was quick to recogniseMore

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