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Recent rituals of indigenous recognition in Australia: Welcome to Country

Merlan, Francesca

Description

In this article, I examine the recent emergence in Australia of two small, and now regularly enacted, rituals: "Acknowledgments" and "Welcomes to Country." These are expressions of recognition, or response to perceived neglect and injustice. Recognition has become a global theme, part of a broader politics of reparation focused on indigenous and other colonized and subordinated peoples, and includes practices of apology and reconciliation. In Australia, recognition implies expansion the of...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorMerlan, Francesca
dc.date.accessioned2015-12-13T22:16:28Z
dc.identifier.issn0002-7294
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/70876
dc.description.abstractIn this article, I examine the recent emergence in Australia of two small, and now regularly enacted, rituals: "Acknowledgments" and "Welcomes to Country." These are expressions of recognition, or response to perceived neglect and injustice. Recognition has become a global theme, part of a broader politics of reparation focused on indigenous and other colonized and subordinated peoples, and includes practices of apology and reconciliation. In Australia, recognition implies expansion the of relationship between categories of people who have been on unequal, distant, and (at some levels) negligible terms as settlers and natives, colonizers and colonized. Practices of recognition are therefore ambiguous: What is to be recognized, and how is recognition to proceed? Here I consider these rituals and their putative origins, structure, content, variations, and affect of participants and audiences. Both rituals cast recognition in ways that continue recent decades of national emphasis on indigenous emplacement, judgments concerning originariness, and authenticity; "Welcomes" also recast relations in terms of a host-guest framework. The emergence of these rituals fosters new kinds of indigenous public expression and receptions of recognition as well as some standardization of both. It is an indication of change, as well as of its limits in indigenous-nonindigenous relationships.
dc.publisherAmerican Anthropological Association
dc.rightsAuthor/s retain copyright
dc.sourceAmerican Anthropologist
dc.titleRecent rituals of indigenous recognition in Australia: Welcome to Country
dc.typeJournal article
local.description.notesImported from ARIES
local.identifier.citationvolume116
dc.date.issued2014
local.identifier.absfor160100 - ANTHROPOLOGY
local.identifier.ariespublicationU3488905xPUB2451
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationMerlan, Francesca, College of Arts and Social Sciences, ANU
local.bibliographicCitation.issue2
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage296
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage309
local.identifier.doi10.1111/aman.12089
dc.date.updated2015-12-11T07:26:20Z
local.identifier.scopusID2-s2.0-84901639948
local.identifier.thomsonID000337535600005
dcterms.accessRightsOpen Access
CollectionsANU Research Publications

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