Aboriginality and the Northern Territory intervention

Macoun, Alissa (2010). Aboriginality and the Northern Territory intervention. In: Selvaraj Velayutham, Norbert Ebert and Sheila Watkins, TASA 2010 Conference Proceedings: Social Causes, Private Lives. The Annual Conference of The Australian Sociological Association, Sydney, Australia, (1-14). 6-9 December 2010.

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Author Macoun, Alissa
Title of paper Aboriginality and the Northern Territory intervention
Conference name The Annual Conference of The Australian Sociological Association
Conference location Sydney, Australia
Conference dates 6-9 December 2010
Proceedings title TASA 2010 Conference Proceedings: Social Causes, Private Lives
Place of Publication Hawthorn, Vic., Australia
Publisher The Australian Sociological Association
Publication Year 2010
Sub-type Fully published paper
ISBN 9780646546285
Editor Selvaraj Velayutham
Norbert Ebert
Sheila Watkins
Start page 1
End page 14
Total pages 14
Collection year 2011
Language eng
Abstract/Summary This paper examines constructions of Aboriginality circulating in discourse surrounding the 2007 introduction of the Northern Territory Emergency Response (the intervention). It provides a preliminary analysis of several constructions of Aboriginality that are deployed to justify the intervention, and identifies subject positions, values, logics and power relations that these constructions create, reflect, sustain and foreclose. I argue that discussions of abuse of Aboriginal children in intervention debates operate as a site for contestations about the nature, value and future of Aboriginality, generating, reinforcing and restricting the political legitimacy of a range of subjectivities and speaking positions. Aboriginality is constructed in dominant discourse as primitive, in need of erasure, modification or development in the face of the inevitable and inescapable demands of modernity; it is also understood as inherently savage or threatening, and hence in need of control or discipline. These ideas culminate in understandings of Aboriginal communities as threats to the settler order that must be managed or contained, which are deployed to reinforce the settler state‟s assertions of sovereignty and moral authority.
Q-Index Code E1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

 
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Created: Tue, 15 Mar 2011, 15:08:18 EST by Elmari Louise Whyte on behalf of School of Political Science & Internat'l Studies