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Curtin Indigenous Research Network (CIRN) Lecture Series

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The Curtin Indigenous Research Network (CIRN) presents new papers on the politics of race in the contemporary Western Australian planning and media landscape.

Event details

The two papers entitled ‘Australian urban indigenous activism and governance: between engagement and contention’ and ‘Media, machines and might: reproducing Western Australia’s violent state of Aboriginal protection’ will be presented by Dr Tod Jones, Dr Shaphan Cox and Dr Thor Kerr.

Wednesday 23 March 2016
3.00 pm - 4.30 pm
Humanities Boardroom B209:224
Free to attend- please register at the link below
Students in the Centre for Aboriginal Studies


For more information and to register for this event, please click here

The two papers...

‘Australian urban indigenous activism and governance: between engagement and contention’

Presented by: Dr Tod Jones and Dr Shaphan Cox

Indigenous planning has been one of the most controversial areas of planning in Perth. Aboriginal people engage with the planning system as both citizens, and a specific group with a long history of social exclusion and an even longer, enduring set of relationships to Western Australia and ownership claims. The purpose of this paper is to use analysis of recent events and current dilemmas to theorise emerging practices of urban indigeneity in Perth. Progress towards negotiated settlements and greater engagement in the areas of native title, Aboriginal participation, interpretation of places, and some aspects of land management (such as national parks) has to be weighed against the planned reduction in Aboriginal people’s capacity to intervene and advocate in the area of Aboriginal heritage, exclusion from the management of important Aboriginal sites, the decision to close a number of remote communities, and government responses and media representations of protests about Aboriginal planning issues and sites. Our analysis builds on strong cultural and indigenous geographies traditions addressing Aboriginality and the socio-political definitions of the city in a settler society context in order to address contemporary dilemmas and urban planning processes.


‘Media, Machines and Might: Reproducing Western Australia’s Violent State of Aboriginal Protection’

Presented by: Dr Thor Kerr and Dr Shaphan Cox

How does state violence against Aboriginal bodies occur with such frequency and impunity? This paper tries to answer the question by demonstrating how such violence has been reproduced in recent years in the space of Western Australia through mutually-reinforcing relations of financial interest. Through an analysis of texts produced by Western Australia’s largest commercial media organisation, Seven West Media, compared with alternative sources, this paper demonstrates how the function of private capital accumulation in state violence against sovereign Aboriginal people has remained largely hidden in public view, enabling the violence to proceed unchallenged through discourses of private capital accumulation and public Aboriginal protection.