Archaeology

Download A Place for Strangers: Towards a History of Australian by Tony Swain PDF

By Tony Swain

ISBN-10: 0521430054

ISBN-13: 9780521430050

A few of the components ascribed to standard Aboriginal ideals and practices are the results of touch with exterior peoples--Melanesians and Indonesians, in addition to Europeans. This debatable and provocative publication is the 1st exact and continent-wide learn of the influence of outsiders on Australian Aboriginal worldviews. the writer separates out a typical center of non secular trust that 1111 precontact spirituality of Australian Aborigines extra fascinated by position than with any philosophy of time or origins. a spot for Strangers investigates Aboriginal delusion, ritual, cosmology and philosophy, and in addition examines social association, subsistence styles and cultural switch. it is going to be of serious curiosity to readers in anthropology, non secular reviews, comparative philosophy, Aboriginal reviews and Australian heritage.

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Extra resources for A Place for Strangers: Towards a History of Australian Aboriginal Being

Sample text

His reading of Aboriginal traditions was essentially in accord with his comparativist thesis that cyclical history is a mechanism for overcoming the terror of time. Thus, amongst Aborigines, 'the ritual reactualization of the mythical history reactivates communication with the Dream Time, regenerates life, and assures its continuation. In short, the ritual "re-creates" die world'. The cosmogonic emphasis here reflects Eliade's insistence upon die ontologic priority of history. ' Through recreating the world upon the archetype of the first time, history itself is defeated.

93 38 A place for strangers My departure from Shapiro's views will be easily anticipated. I believe his skewed perspective derives from reading Aboriginal traditions from within an assumed, if allegedly denied, ontology of time. If, on the other hand, the Aboriginal spatial order has in fact left no room for the emergence of temporality as a principle of being, the 'denial of the body' cannot be an adjunct to the 'denial of time'. Rather, the 'denial of the body' must derive from the 'affirmation of place'.

The latter, furthermore, are the basis of his argument that the Yolngu do have a form of time reckoning, and that their structure is linked more with ongoing clanlines than place. Inheritance myths bolster 'potential threat to their territorial integrity' by shifting emphasis from place-rights to kinship. In contrast myths of inheritance or their equivalents do not seem to have been reported from parts of Australia . . where totemic cult groups are the product of a negotiated amalgam of individual ties to place.

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