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The Changing Politics of Miscegenation

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-25, 21:55 authored by Rolls, M
In Tasmania's Mercury newspaper Henry Reynolds raised the contentious issue of identity in respect to Tasmanian Aboriginal people of mixed heritage. Such people, Reynolds stated, might better be described as Creole. This paper firstly canvasses why it is that notions of hybridity are anathema to many Aborigines, then proceeds to discuss how the elision of white heritage and identity invoke some of the same contested ideologies underpinning the assimilation policy. The paper continues by examining the issue of identity in the context of the language used to describe the British usurpation of Australia and subsequent black-white relations. Finally, the paper examines the impact that the Aboriginal presence has had and is having on the psyche of settler-Australians, and suggests a reason why it is that many settler-Australians in mixed Aboriginal-non-Aboriginal partnerships appear comfortable with, or at least do not resist, having their offspring elide one heritage and identity (white) for the sake of another (Aboriginal).


Publication title

Aboriginal History







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