Decolonising memories: Indigenous Australians' memories of starting school

Leonie McIntosh, Emma Kearney, Tuija Turunen, Bob Perry

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


This chapter draws on data from a research project conducted during 2010-2012, which explored memories about starting school in Australia. The data consist of over ninety Australian participants' recollections of starting school between 1928 and 1995. The participants were immigrants to Australia. (n=37), as well as Indigenous (n=11) and non-Indigenous (n=50) Australians. Intergnerational aspects of starting school have been addressed by involving different generations of the same family (Turunen & Dockett, 2013). Recollections of starting school were collected during autobiographical narrative interviews. A smaller component of the research project specifically sought Indigenous Australians' memories of starting school. This chapter examines those memories in light of oral communication traditions within Indigenous culturesin Australia and in response to the influences of colonisation on Indigenous Australians' experiences of schooling. It highlights the importance of decolonisation in both the sharing and dissemination of Indigenous memories of starting school.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFacetten von Ubergqangen im Bildungssystem
Subtitle of host publicationNational und internationale Ergebnisse empirischer Forschung
EditorsIngelore Mammes, Kathrin Racherbaumer, Anke B Liegmann
Place of PublicationMunster, Germany
PublisherWaxmann Verlag Gmbh
Number of pages14
ISBN (Print)9783830980636
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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