The Day of Mourning was a chance for Indigenous Australians to stand up for what they believe in, and was the first step towards equality. The rights of Indigenous Australians were restricted by the Government policy of protection and assimilation. The Aboriginal Protection Act was passed in 1869, which gave power over the lives of Aboriginal people to the government, such as where they could live or work. They removed mixed decent Aboriginal children from their families in an attempt to assimilate them into white society. The Child Welfare Act 1939 abandoned this policy and gave Indigenous parents the right to take their children back.
The Mission Schools are an early example of the connection between official education policies and key events in Aboriginal history. Aboriginal children were separated from their parents and placed into these schools which according to McGrath (as cited by Parbury, 1999:66) it was recommended that these establishments be located ‘as far as possible’ from non Aboriginal residents so as to minimize any heathen influence that Aboriginal children might be subject to from their parents. Mission Schools not only prepared Aboriginal youth for the manual labour market but also, adds Parbury (1999:67) their aim was‘to destroy Aboriginal culture and replace it with an Anglo-European work and faith ethic.’ Despite the NSW Public Instruction Act (1880) which made education free, secular and compulsory for all children Aboriginal children could be excluded from public schools based on prevailing dominant group attitudes. Consequently, the NSW Aborigines Protection Act (1909) was introduced as a result of a perceived public education crisis and Laws had already been passed, similar to protectionist type policies. This Act gave the State the power to remove Aboriginal children from their families whereby this period of time has become known as ‘Stolen Generations.’ It was during this time that Aboriginal children were segregated from mainstream schools.
There have been many unanswered questions in Australia about Aboriginal history. One of these is which government policy towards indigenous people has had the largest impact on Indigenous Australians? Through research the Assimilation Policy had the largest impact upon Indigenous Australians and the three supporting arguments to prove this are the Aborigines losing their rights to freedom, Aboriginal children being removed from their families, and finally the loss of aboriginality. The Assimilation was a policy set by the government in 1937 and went to till 1964. This policy of Assimilation was set not just for Aborigines in Australia but for all foreign immigrants that were not European and white in colour.
In the nineteenth century, the “History wars” became the fight between the most prominent historians revolving around the deception of frontier conflict between the labor and coalition. The debate aroused from the different interpretations of the violence that took place during the European colonization and to what degree. It became a crisis in history, emerging from the dispossession of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders (ATSI) that resulted in exclusion of their traditions and culture. The ATSI were the first people of Australia that brought along a different culture, language, kinship structures and a different way of life (Face the Facts, 2012). Post European colonization was a time where the ATSI people experienced disadvantage in the land they called home.
They thought this way because of the major differences between the Aboriginal ways of life and the Colonial ways of life. The Aborigines’ simple tools and lack of material items led to the colonists’ ignorance towards the economy and life style of the Aborigines’. Within a short amount of time, the population of Aborigines dropped by hundreds of thousands. Through the expansion of the British colonists, the Aborigines were no longer a free people and were pushed to fight for their liberty. The British invasion of Australia led to many violent battles and ra... ... middle of paper ... ...able children and juvenile offenders.
Within the past half century, Aboriginal peoples have been relentless and determined in their struggle to attain self-determination, maintain their treaty rights and dispute rightful control of land possession matters. By means of mobilization and resistance movements they have contested and are challenging the policies that originated with colonialism and continue with government policies of the present day. The following essay will begin with a timeline of significant dates in the history of colonial and present day policy and law making that governing powers have applied and imposed on First Nation populations. A portion of the paper will cover a h... ... middle of paper ... ...cess. Ultimately his actions opened debate and contributed to the demise of the Meech Lake Accord.
Modern Aboriginal Issues The first Europeans to settle Australia treated the Aboriginals in a brutal, unfair manor. They downgraded Aboriginals to a lower status as human beings. They tried to force the Aboriginals to conform to the western way of life for more than 200 years. It is only fairly recently that the Aboriginals have finally been able to gain back some of their indigenous rights and traditions. Yet they are still deficient in many areas.
“You girls can’t talk that blackfulla language here, you know…You gotta forget it and talk English all the time” (Pilkington 72). Michel Foucault pointed out that we are “subjects of the state”. When applied to this book, Follow the Rabbit Proof Fence presents Molly, Gracie and Daisy who are victims of the discourses and circumstances that force an unknown culture upon innocents. The Stolen Generations is the name given to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children taken away, forcibly removed or made wards of the state by the adaptation policies of the new governments of Australia. The practice of removing Aboriginal children from their families began in the first days of the colony, but the process intensified at the end of the nineteenth century and became official government policy in all states of Australia in the twentieth century.
The Stolen Generation is seen as a grave chapter in our countries history and in Aboriginal History. Stolen Generation didn’t come to light until the 1960s and early 1970s with public shock and anger. The rights of Aboriginal peoples during this point were increasingly low as many were forced to live on reserves or missions and their children were taken at a young age. The rights of the stolen generation were somewhat better than their previous generation as they had a right to have a good job, health care and have and raise children as their parents had none of these rights. The assimilation program was a way to turn these Aboriginal children and essential “turn them white”; this can be seen as a violation of human rights and international law.
Terra Nullius was once apparent in Australian society, but has now been nullified with the turn of the century and the changes of societal attitudes. With the political changes in our society, and the apology to Indigenous Australians, society is now witnessing an increase in aboriginals gaining a voice in today’s society. Kevin Rudd’s apology as described by Pat Dodson (2006) as a seminal moment in Australia’s history, expressed the true spirit of reconciliation opening a new chapter in the history of Australia. Although from this reconciliation, considerable debate has arisen within society as to whether Aboriginals have a right to land of cultural significance. Thus, causing concern for current land owners, as to whether they will be entitled to their land.