The murdering island

Jeanette Thompson

    Research output: Textual Creative WorksCreative Works Original - Textual


    Research Background When I interviewed Peter Batey, curator of the Bald Archy Exhibition for the Museum of the Riverina, at his schoolhouse in Coolac, we wandered over aboriginal sites traditionally used for corroboree. The highway over these lands has claimed many lives and work was in progress for the Coolac Bypass. In 2005, a crop dusting plane sprayed a party of indigenous elders inspecting archaeological sites along the proposed route. For those aware of the history of the Murdering Island and Poison Waterholes Creek, the 'incident' held deeper significance than the local media were willing to recognise. Research Contribution This short story brings to critical public attention the themes of racial conflict and the differing interpretations of culture that underscore the history of the Coolac area, and indeed of the Riverina. There is little public awareness of the scale of the Wiradjuri wars or of the collective resonance of past grievances in the descendants of this conflict, both black and white. Research Significance Charles Sturt University is committed to enhancing inclusiveness through the development of an Indigenous Education Strategy. Literature, in the form of a short story, enables us to question sensitive historical understandings and explore community perceptions. It allows diverse readers to access the history of white settlement and the stories of the Wiradjuri custodians of the lands, in an aesthetic as well as efferent response.
    Original languageEnglish
    Type5 page short story published in fourW seventeen, peer-reviewed pub with open submission process.
    PublisherFourW Press
    Number of pages5
    Place of PublicationWagga Wagga, NSW, Australia
    ISBN (Print)958675937
    Publication statusPublished - 2006

    Publication series

    NamefourW seventeen: new writing


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