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The Forum > Article Comments > Reclaiming the past > Comments

Reclaiming the past : Comments

By Stephen Hagan, published 1/6/2005

Stephen Hagan argues that in order to feel proud of their race, Indigenous people must reacquaint themselves with their family history

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G'day Stephen. Thank your for an honest and insightful article.

I am a white born female Aussie with extremely white skin, strawberry blond hair and heaps of freckles. I have often been asked if I am a "whitie abo". This is because I have typical indigenous nose appearance and "lubra lips". My great great grandmother was Polynesian person and my great grandfather was an Irish person. The physical connection is more than obvious.

I have always had an innate feeling with and for Indigenous Australians - the only true Australians.

I lived in Townsville 1993 for 5 months. I met Erika and Erik Kyle. Erika shared food in my home and stayed overnight. Every day I saw drunk ++++ people - my count was that black and white drunks were equal. At least the Aboriginal people washed their clothing in the river and they hung it out to dry on Council fences.

In 1997 I wrote a program for Yangulla Centre/TAFE for Aboriginal and Toress Strait Islander people. I also taught into the program - Primary Health Care. It was a wonderful experience for me. Most students were in emotional turmoil since I knew a little bit more about their culture than they did.
Posted by kalweb, Friday, 3 June 2005 9:15:02 PM
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well wasnt that all part of the assimilation agenda - beat em, em being our grandparents, to stop em speaking in language, to stop em singing, to stop em dancing and stop em practicing customs by taking em off the land.

and then for my generation and those who follow the agenda is further supported by misinformation in the education system about aboriginal people and their historical connection to this land.

gotta agree that the apathy within our communities is a depressing thing to witness, plus the americanisation that is happening amongst the younger generations what with their fascination for rap and all that.

even in the communities where those traditional customs are still practiced there is growing disinterest amongst the younger ones to take part in lore and cultural practices but there are also those who do get in there and are learning all that they can before their elders pass on.

the challenge is to walk in two worlds, to maintain ancestral connections and to mix it up with non-aboriginal australia and prove that we can do just as good as our non-aboriginal counterparts but with a black slant to it.

kalali goori.
Posted by kalalli, Monday, 6 June 2005 7:02:57 PM
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