Analysis of The Redfern Address Essays

Analysis of The Redfern Address Essays

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Summary of Text: ‘The Redfern Address’ is a speech that was given to a crowd made up of mainly indigenous Australians at the official opening of the United Nations International Year of the World’s Indigenous Peoples in Redfern Park, New South Wales. This text deals with many of the challenges that have been faced by Indigenous Australians over time, while prompting the audience to ask themselves, ‘How would I feel?’ Throughout the text, Keating challenges the views of history over time, outlines some of the outrageous crimes committed against the Indigenous community, and praises the indigenous people on their contribution to our nation, despite the way they have been treated.

In what ways does this text explore the development of belonging through connections to people, places, groups, communities or the larger world?

‘The Redfern Address’ is a text that explores the development of belonging through connections to people and communities.

Throughout the text Keating connects with people on a personal level through his word choice and tone. This connection with his audience allows him to further develop belonging, and evoke a greater emotional response in his audience. This word choice and tone can be seen in the lines, “We took the traditional lands and smashed the traditional way of life. We brought the diseases. The alcohol. We committed the murders. We practiced discrimination and exclusion. It was our ignorance and our prejudice.”
These lines exemplify Keating’s constant reference to the non-indigenous group as ‘we’ and ‘us’, this coupled with the accusatory tone present throughout this section of the text ensures that the blame is being put on the white Australian’s of the population. The word choice and tone in ...


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...stralians, which Keating sees as key to developing belonging.

How does this text either help you to explore and understand the possibilities of belonging or exclude you from connecting with the world it represents?

Paul Keating’s “The Redfern Address” is a text that allows responders to explore and understand the possibilities of belonging. The text is specifically aimed at helping non-indigenous Australians explore and understand the possibility of not belonging. This is communicated through the constant use of personal pronouns, e.g. ‘us’ or ‘we’, to direct the entire text at non-indigenous Australians like Keating.
The lines, “As I said, it might help if we … we can imagine it’s opposite” use perspective to put the non-indigenous Australians into the shoes of indigenous Australians, to help them explore and understand the possibilities of not belonging.

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