In the Age of Mabo: History, Aborigines and Australia

In the Age of Mabo: History, Aborigines and Australia

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Edited by Bain Attwood

The 1992 High Count'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 rep resents a new historical narrative which affects the way we conceive of Australia and the relationship between indigenous and settler Australia.

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 anthro pology, but also for the politics of identity.

In the Age of Mabo assesses the way that the Aboriginal past is represented in a range of national discourses, and the importance Aboriginality thus has for debates about nationhood and national identity in the context of the republic.