Spatial Reading, Territorial Signs, and the Clamour of Occupation

UTS ePRess
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Reading the Country: 30 Years On, 2018, pp. 193 - 208
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This chapter examines the notion of reading in relation to space and place, and develops an ethics of reading from engagement with Krim Benterrak, Stephen Muecke and Paddy Roe's Reading the Country: Introduction to Nomadology.1 In the context of settler colonial Australia, ongoing practices of what Aileen Moreton-Robinson calls the 'logics of white possession' shape the ways that everyday social practices become readable in relation to Indigenous and non-Indigenous histories and communities.2 Settler colonial society teaches non-Indigenous Australians to treat Australian spaces as incapable of sustaining Indigenous bodies and meanings. Among these spaces, public beaches and memorial statues have become particularly charged sites of investment for non-Indigenous communities, 3 but our focus in the latter part of this chapter will be the 'booing' of Australian Rules Football player Adam Geodes, an Andyamathanha and Narungga man, on the racialised space of the football field. We begin this investigation through an encounter with Reading the Country. If we had spotted its spine in a library, we would have guessed that Reading the Country offered some comments on the poetics of pastoral landscapes. But then the subtitle, Introduction to Nomadology, contained a strong whiff of French philosophers Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari.
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