Richard Broome tells the story of the impact of European ideas, guns, killer microbes and a pastoral economy on the networks of kinship, trade and cultures that various Aboriginal peoples of Victoria had developed over millennia. From first settlement to the present, he shows how Aboriginal families have coped with ongoing disruption and displacement, and how individuals and groups have challenged the system. With painful stories of personal loss as well as many successes, Broome outlines how Aboriginal Victorians survived near decimation to become a vibrant community today.
The first history of black-white interaction in Victoria to the present, Aboriginal Victorians offers new insights into frontier conflict, attempts at control and assimilation, the Stolen Generation, and Aboriginal survival and identity in modern Australia. Based on consultation with Aboriginal communities and families, as well as a range of historical research, it is an even-handed and compelling account.
Richard Broome is to be congratulated for writing this history in a style that is easy to read, very informative and brings the past to the present.'
Jim Berg, JP, Gunditjmara man, founder and director of the Koorie Heritage Trust
This finely crafted and wonderfully compassionate book deepens our understanding of the history of colonialism.'
Bain Attwood, Adjunct Professor, Centre for Cross-Cultural Research, Australian National University