Forging Barkindji masculine identity in the 21st century : zombie nightmare or deliberate dreaming

  • Paul Collis

    Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


    Aboriginal identity and politics remain essential to improving conditions for Aboriginal people in Australia, and of social justice in general. The condition of the Australian Aboriginal, furthermore, has substantial relevance to the situation of other colonized peoples around the world. It is the argument of this thesis that storytelling is an important practice through which Indigenous people can deconstruct dominant modes of history and also reconstruct their own identities and histories. This thesis focuses on Aboriginal masculinity. My grandfather was a storyteller, teacher and a Barkindji man who bequeathed to me some small portion of his traditional knowledge. However, it seems at present, to be impossible to be a Barkindji man in the same way my grandfather was. Instead, I, and many men like me, are trapped in “blackness.” By telling the stories of my grandfather and myself, and interrogating these stories with the aid of thinkers such as Fanon, Stuart Hall and Lawrence Perry, and others, modes of Aboriginal masculinity are investigated, specifically with an eye to new forms of tribal “becoming.” The thesis then uses the discussion of these stories to explain the use of landscape, characterization and plot devices in my novel, One Day, One Night, and Another Day. In so doing, the thesis attempts to produce deeper insights into the condition of “blackness” verses whiteness on one hand and blackness verses tribal identity on the other.
    Date of Award2016
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorJordan Williams (Supervisor) & Jen Webb (Supervisor)

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