Subject details

The subject contests historical representations of Indigenous peoples as passive and merely responsive in the face of oppression and exclusion. It examines how individuals and organisations were pro-active, creative, and engaged in seeking participation and inclusion, and contextualizes their engagement with the political environments in which they existed.

At the completion of this subject you will have acquired:

  1. skills in research, study and succinct writing
  2. an understanding of the political and historical contexts of Aboriginal activism
  3. a familiarity with some key Aboriginal thinkers in Australian history
  4. the ability to place political agendas within their cultural contexts.
    • Warriors and Rebels
    • Interpreters and Guides
    • Petitions and Adjustments: Wyballena 1846, Corranderk 1863, Yirrkala 1963
    • Progress and citizenship: FCAATSI 1958, stockmen¿s wages in 1963, 1967 referendum
    • Workers and Strikers: Torres Strait lugger strike 1936, Pilbara workers strike 1946, Palm Island and Yarrabah strikes 1957, Gurindji walk-off 1966
    • Thinkers and Writers
    • Social activism: Freedom Ride and Tent Embassy
    • Legal battles: Gove Land rights case 1971, Murray Island land claim, Wik Mungkan native title, Torres Strait sea claim
    • Reconciliation, participation and national leadership
  • Study resources

    • Instructional methods

      • Discussion forum/Discussion Board
      • Online assignment submission
    • Online materials

      • Resources and Links
      • Printable format materials
      • Online Assessment


Note: Level 2 subjects normally assume an introductory level of prior knowledge in this area, e.g. from studying related Level 1 subjects or other relevant experience.

Special requirements

No special requirements

Examine the way in which Aboriginal persons and organization have dealt with the various practices of racial exclusion in Australian since 1788. Trace the biographies of some activists to compare the aspirations, programs, methods and strategies deployed from sporadic localized activism  to co-operation, to protest and resistance movements and the prevailing ideas and attitudes that formed the parameters of such engagement.

  • Essay 2 (40%)
  • Presentation — Powerpoint (30%)
  • Essay 1 (30%)

Textbooks are not required.

Textbook information is pending.

Related degrees

undergraduate USA-IND-DEG-2019

Bachelor of Arts Indigenous Studies

  • Major in Indigenous Studies Subjects

undergraduate SWI-BBP-DEG-2019

Bachelor of Psychological Sciences

  • Major in Psychology
  • Co-Major in Sociology

undergraduate SWI-BBS-DEG-2019

Bachelor of Behavioural Studies

  • Major in Psychological Studies
  • Co-major in Sociology