In the Age of Mabo: History, Aborigines and Australia
Allen & Unwin
Bain Atwood (Lecturer in History, Monash University, Australia)
Publication Date :
1 Jan 1996
The 1992 High Court's Mabo decision has provoked much controversy in contemporary Australia. As the ruling has increasingly become the subject of intense debate throughout the community, the implications of Mabo have shifted from the law to history, politics and culture. By analysing the historical dimensions of Mabo, this book reflects on its profound cultural and political significance. It suggests how the High Court's ruling was determined by the interpretation offered by historical scholarship. And it considers how Mabo in its turn represents a new historical narrative which affects the way we conceive of Australia and the relationship between indigenous and settler Australians. Mabo was underpinned by the emergence of a new field of knowledge called 'Aboriginal history.' This book discusses the far-reaching outcomes of Aborigines presenting their histories, not only for the law and the disciplines of history, archaeology, and anthrpology, but also for the politics of identity. In The Age Of Mabo assesses how the Aboriginal past is represented in a range of national discourses, and the importance Aboriginality thus has for debates about nationhood an
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