Autonomy and the intercultural: interpreting the history of Australian Aboriginal water management in the Roper River catchment, Northern Territory

Barber, Marcus and Jackson, Sue (2014) Autonomy and the intercultural: interpreting the history of Australian Aboriginal water management in the Roper River catchment, Northern Territory. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, 20 4: 670-693. doi:10.1111/1467-9655.12129


Author Barber, Marcus
Jackson, Sue
Title Autonomy and the intercultural: interpreting the history of Australian Aboriginal water management in the Roper River catchment, Northern Territory
Journal name Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1359-0987
1467-9655
Publication date 2014-12
Year available 2014
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/1467-9655.12129
Open Access Status
Volume 20
Issue 4
Start page 670
End page 693
Total pages 24
Place of publication Chichester, West Sussex United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Collection year 2015
Language eng
Abstract Integrated discussions of the multi-valency of objects and the use and appropriation of natural resources in colonial contexts are uncommon. By combining previously scattered historical, legal, and ethnographic sources, this article examines Australian Aboriginal dam and weir construction along the Roper River, focusing on the repeated re-purposing, re-contextualization and reinterpretation of the structures over time by both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal protagonists. Through that process, it contributes to contemporary theoretical debates about intercultural colonial relations and about the relative autonomy of indigenous peoples within colonizing societies. In particular, the article highlights the historical evolution of constraints on local autonomy in colonial contexts and the role of individual agency in constituting and/or reconfiguring intercultural relations. Previously little known, these temporary water regulation structures are now the best historically documented instance of Aboriginal water management in Australia, enabling a diverse array of interpretations and the critical evaluation of key contemporary social-theoretical concepts.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Non HERDC
School of Social Science Publications
 
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Created: Mon, 11 May 2015, 09:45:02 EST by Julie Hunter on behalf of School of Social Science