Representations of Indigenous Australians

• a range of historical and contemporary
representations of Australian Indigenous culture
that could be interpreted as ethnocentric and/or
culturally relativistic representations
Culturally relativistic
OR Ethnocentric?
Look at the following representations
and decide whether they are culturally
relativistic (sensitive to and of)
Indigenous Australians OR
ethnocentric (insensitive to and of)
Indigenous Australians.
Record your responses
in the table provided.
The Aboriginal and Torres
Strait Islander Flags
Aboriginal Language
Areas in Victoria Map
40 years of the tent embassy
(The Canberra Times, 27 January 2012)
Protests erupted because of
Tony Abbott’s comments
about ‘moving on’ in
reference to the 40th
anniversary of the Tent
Embassy. The Prime Minister
and Tony Abbott were
evacuated from a ceremony
honouring Emergency
Service Workers when fears
for their safety emerged.
Aboriginal Embassy, 1972
Late on Australia Day 1972, three young
Aboriginal men erected a beach umbrella
on the lawns outside Parliament House in
Canberra and put up a sign which read
'Aboriginal Embassy'. Over the following
months, supporters of the embassy
swelled to 2000. When the police violently
dismantled the tents and television film
crews captured the violence for the
evening news, an outraged public
expressed its disgust to the federal
…The site became known as the
Aboriginal Tent Embassy. It was a
powerful symbol...Their embassy was a
tent - a well understood image of poverty
and impermanence. Their camp attracted
unprecedented support from people
across the country who recognised their
sense of grievance and made their views
known to the government.
Advertisement by ‘Youth Connections’ and
NSW Australian Indigenous Communities
Advertisement in a Darwin
Newspaper (1930s)
Published in a Darwin newspaper
in the 1930s this picture signifies
the suffering caused by the
inherent racism of the Australian
government's Aboriginal
assimilation policies. The presents
the children are holding were
most likely only provided for the
sake of the photograph.
The caption reads: A group of
tiny half-caste and quadroon
children at the Darwin half-caste
home. The Minister for the
Interior (Mr Perkins) recently
appealed to charitable
organisations in Melbourne and
Sydney to find homes for the
children and rescue them from
becoming outcasts.
Song Lyrics
 Took the Children Away – Archie Roach
(Stolen Generation)
 Black and Deadly – The Last Kinection
 Treaty – Yothu Yindi
(about PM Bob Hawke’s promise of a treaty in 1988)

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