Bluff Rock: Autobiography of a Massacre
Fremantle Arts Centre Press, 2005 - 268 Seiten
The past is a problem for us. We know certain events happened, sometimes exactly when and yet our sometimes longing for certainty cannot be satisfied . . . We tell stories about where we come from and so who we are. We change these stories sometimes minutely, sometimes radically depending upon our audiences and our task.
Bluff Rockis organised around the key question- how do we know the past? Using historical material (letters, memoirs), a tourist brochure, and local histories, it focuses on the ways that the massacre(s) of Aborigines at Bluff Rock, in New England during the 1840s has been recorded and remembered.
It is the author's ability to lay herself on the line that makes this a courageous and even controversial text. Schlunke, who grew up in New England area, takes this one story from early colonial Australia and looks at the many ways it is organised as a memory of Indigenous/non-Indigenous relations.
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Decked with daub and feather, Husband child and wife, The dark ones leapt
together As they had been in life! 20 Sweethearts, sisters, brothers, They all leapt
hand in hand, In-laws, fathers, mothers Leapt for the spirit land! Did his
I was holding his hand and watching him breathe, taking breaths with him, when
his breath got a little more even and he died. There was nothing as noisy as an
angel appearing,- there was a complete, touchable silence. Our hands felt 231.
And while I applaud the preachers and the speakers, I am thinking — at each
mention of God — that this is no place to hold your girlfriend's hand. But these are
strange times, when 'mainstreaming' (unisex gyms, no women's studies subjects,
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IT HAPPENED ALONG THE HIGHWAY
WRITING AND READING THE LOCAL
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