It is still the Balanda way: How governments approach Indigeneity
- S. Murray-Smith
- Publication Type:
- Journal Article
- Overland, 2017, (226), pp. 3 - 10
- Issue Date:
You could be forgiven for thinking Aboriginal languages were finally being respected and resourced – but you would be wrong. You would be wrong because there’s a connection between the catastrophic situation in remote Aboriginal communities and the future of living Aboriginal languages. While measures to revive languages are inspiring and should be supported (so far these efforts have been allocated meagre funding), they do not represent a solution, or even a sufficient understanding of the problem. We must recognise that the structures and policies that severely damaged these languages in the first place still exist, and in some places, particularly in northern Australia, they are being re-imposed with alarming vigour. The most spectacularly brutal example is the Northern Territory Emergency Response, known to most as the NT Intervention, and later rebranded as Stronger Futures by the last Labor government.
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