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February 13th 2012 print

“daft way to run a nation”

Gary Johns: “Coronation Hill, the gold, platinum and palladium mine became a park. A result of environmental and Aboriginal myth-making and mischief-making. I thought it was a daft way to run a nation.”


Waking Up To Dreamtime edited by Gary Johns, Quadrant eBook, 2012


First published by the Bennelong Society, Waking Up To Dreamtime is republished as a Quadrant eBook with a new (2012) introduction by Gary Johns:

My first foray into Aboriginal matters was as a high school student in the 1960s, verbally assaulted by a very angry young Aborigine who wanted to change the world for Aboriginal people. It was a most uncomfortable experience, but I hope he had some success.

I never came close again until in 1990, as a Member of the House of Representatives, the Coronation Hill dispute was brought to my attention. Dr Ron Brunton lobbied me.
With his advice, and after judging the facts, I believe I took a principled view on the issue.

The Cabinet agreed, but unfortunately, the Prime Minister disagreed. Coronation Hill, the gold, platinum and palladium mine became a park. A result of environmental and Aboriginal myth-making and mischief-making. I thought it was a daft way to run a nation.


This collection of essays shows how the right way ahead for the welfare of Aborigines is not as a separatist, self-governing society, but as an identifiable and individualistic part of the wider Australian community where, already, many Aborigines have made outstanding contributions.



Waking Up To Dreamtime:
The Illusion of Aboriginal Self-Determination

Edited by Gary Johns

Contents:

“Aboriginal Orthodoxy in Canada” by Tom Flanagan

“The Poverty of Aboriginal Self-Determination” by Gary Johns

“The New Authoritarian Separatism” by Trevor Satour

“The Most Threatened People in Australia: the Remote Aboriginal Minority” by Steven Etherington

“‘This Is As Much As We Can Do’: Aboriginal Domestic Violence” by Stephanie Jarrett

“Are We Headed in the Right Direction?” by Helen McLaughlin

“Sceptical Thoughts on Customary Law” by Kenneth Maddock

Download Waking Up To Dreamtime eBook (pdf) here…