Insights from Quadrant

‘Indigenous knowledge’,
how it blossoms

At The Conversation, editor Misha Ketchell makes the sort of pronouncement you might expect from a former nob at Crikey! and ex-Media Watch scourge of all that is not politically correct. Beneath this headline — ‘Making sure we acknowledge Indigenous knowledge‘ — at the taxpayer-supported site where academics can bolster their tally of publications by posting twaddle, there is this announcement. (emphasis added)

… we have created a new institutional category in our publishing system for authors who are contributing Indigenous knowledge. We hope this approach will support our efforts to boost the participation of Indigenous authors in public discourse, and remove an unnecessary barrier so everyone can benefit from their insights and expertise. 

And our Editorial Board has recently endorsed a policy to ensure where a proposed article or pitch is addressing Indigenous affairs, or a matter that is primarily of concern to First Nations peoples, we will make sure one of the authors is Indigenous. If this is not possible an Indigenous reviewer will be sought. This work is part of a broader range of initiatives to ensure we reflect the central importance of Indigenous knowledge and perspectives…

All of which might squeeze out social researcher at the University of Tasmania, who read Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu and found herself sufficiently persuaded to opine in August at The Conversation how

secondary school textbooks teach our kids the myth that Aboriginal Australians were nomadic hunter-gatherers.

Yes, Aboriginal hunter-gathering is “a myth”.

Then again, perhaps Ms Moore will still qualify when The Conversation next needs an eager-to-be-gulled scribbler to address matters indigenous. After all, if Bruce Pascoe is an Aborigine, anyone can be.

— roger franklin

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