- Format: Kindle Edition
- File Size: 6789 KB
- Print Length: 221 pages
- Publisher: Magabala Books (20 June 2018)
- Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B07DWLW3RV
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Customer Reviews: 299 customer ratings
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #278 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Dark Emu, New Edition Kindle Edition
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"[A] brisk and lucidly written account...This is an important and deeply researched reinterpretation of Australian history and a stark warning about the danger of accepting received wisdom at face value." STARRED REVIEW
--Darina Allen, Irish Examiner
"The truth-telling must go on."
--Stephen Fitzpatrick, The Australian
"[A]n important book that advances a powerful argument for re-evaluating the sophistication of Aboriginal peoples' economic and socio-political livelihoods, and calls for Australia to embrace the complexity, sophistication and innovative skills of Indigenous people into its concept of itself as a nation."
About the Author
Bruce Pascoe is an award-winning Australian writer, editor and anthologist. His books include Shark, Ruby-eyed Coucal, Ocean, Earth and Nightjar. Bruce has also written a number of non-fiction works, including Dark Emu, Convincing Ground, a Wathaurong language dictionary and The Little Red, Yellow, Black Book. His awards include the Prime Minister’s award for Young Adult Literature for Fog a Dox and the NSW Premier’s Book of the Year for Dark Emu. --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
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There's simply no physical evidence that the utopia Mr Pascoe imagines existed. Colonists didn't find Aboriginal people living in houses and growing crops. You'll find nothing of what he describes in any museum, even people living on traditional lands don't have a clue what he's talking about.
Received well by politicians but rightly ignored by the scientific community this is speculative fiction and should not be taught as fact.
This should have been written so much better with clearer detailed, specific references and excerpts to capture and encourage more interest and real appreciation of what has possibly been lost.
In the early-mid-1980s I undertook graduate studies in education about "Aboriginal" Australia - it opened my eyes to the landscape in which I was living, through which I was travelling. Not quite three years ago I spent time in the rural town where I grew up - rode my bicycle, swam in the local streams and climbed all over its regional hills and ranges. Like the back of my hand I knew it - this I knew. I joined the local regional art gallery cultural tour one week-end to learn about it from local significant Gomeroi elder Len Waters. And quickly realised I knew nothing - mere surface landscape - as he explained the land, places of significance, revealed brilliant rock art and scar trees and pointed out all manner of locational features. Bruce Pascoe's book does this for us all - and for folk beyond our shores who want to know the truth!
I am reminded of when I was doing a course at the National Gallery of Victoria. The then Director of the Gallery, Dr Eric Westbrook, said that many of the early artists who came to Australia struggled with the differences from European scenery. Specifically their minds and hands could not fully see and accept the shape of a eucalypt but painted gum trees as more like European trees. Although only once spelt out by Bruce Pascoe this dissonance seems behind much of the lack of understanding of what the explorers and early settlers recorded.
Pascoe has searched early European records of what was seen and makes a mind-blowing case for a rethink about Australian First People's ethos and culture. Through it all he writes compassionately about the European settlers/explorers and recognises the hiccups that occurred in understanding. A very measured perspective.
I'm glad I have read this book.
Top international reviews
I had absolutely no idea of how advanced the aboriginals were before the civilised world took over.
This book enumerates historical informations and materials to think Australian history anew. Unfortunately it lacks focus on its title topic. After the first chapter, we are not sure anymore about the topic of the book (pre-colonial plausible agricultural practices). Facts are overwelmed by temptation of advocacy against prejudices that Australian Aborigines suffered and for Aboriginal recognition. If legitimate, I question the interest in this book and think it does not serve this book and its topic.
Less deviation and a focus on precolonial agriculture and deeper interdisciplinary research (ecology, history, anthropology, economy, agronomy, archeology...) about past, present and future use of indigenous grains would have surely been a better contribution to the rehabilitation of pre-colonial history into the future of the country.