A study in black and white: The Aborigines in Australian history

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Many changes have occurred in Aboriginal history in the last twenty years. There have been sharp challenges to our understanding of the whole of the past, before and since 1988. The past itself has been even more hotly contested than before 1988 as historians and others became embroiled in the so-called 'history wars'. For nearly two hundred years, the Aborigines were treated as little more than 'a melancholy footnote' to Australian history. When A Study in Black and White was first published n 1975, it was called an 'excellent short summary.' This third edition continues to offer a simple, balanced, and concise study of the interaction of Indigenous and European Australians. It has been reorganized and completely rewritten in the light of the boom in historical, archaeological, and anthropological research into, and contending interpretations of, the Australian Indigenous story over the last 40 years. The book traces the evolution of relations between black and white from 1788 to the present but, in a unique approach, it divides the story into two parts: the first examines Aboriginal reactions to the European settlers, while the second examines policies of governments and non-indigenous attitudes towards Indigenous people. Using numerous illustrations and incorporating carefully selected primary sources, author Malcolm Prentis presents an overview which will appeal to both the student and the general reader, providing a background to the situations still facing black and white Australians today.


School of Arts

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