Turning Aboriginal - Historical Bents
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Under the pressures of binary identity politics the search for Aboriginal identity among people of mixed descent has become a Russian roulette that may end up with a public hanging where those with a larger public profile draw a bigger crowd. This essay explores the historical dimensions that underpin confusion and uncertainty: changing definitions of Aboriginality and the external, often discretionary, imposition of identity. Historical case studies illustrate that a certain slippage was always part and parcel of the quest to define who is, and who is not, considered as Aboriginal.
Copyright 2008 Borderlands. The attached file is reproduced here in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander History