Aboriginal Sovereignty

Reflections on race, state and nation

Henry Reynolds
AUD $24.99
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A challenging contribution to a debate about a very sensitive social and political issue

Since Federation, Australians have thought of themselves as one sovereign nation. A nation for a continent. But what of the original Australians? In the aftermath of the Mabo decision, what do we make of their prior rights?

Are they nations within?

Aboriginal Sovereignty is a challenging and provocative study of the political, legal and constitutional relations between indigenous Australians and mainstream society. It presents a bold new interpretation of Aboriginal political development. It challenges us to consider that the Mabo decision is not the boundary at which the recognition of indigenous rights must cease.

Aboriginal Sovereignty confronts the question of whether Aboriginal society exercised a form of sovereignty before 1788, whether the 'tribes' were actually small 'nations'. It considers legal interpretations of what happened when the Briton arrived and pits these interpretations against the record. It looks at the political and legal ramifications of customary law and then considers current political and constitutional discussion, in Australia and overseas.

What are the lessons from North America? Can there be self-determination for the 'nations within' a nation state? What can this mean for Australia in the twenty-first century?

Henry Reynolds is the widely acclaimed author of six books on the history of Aboriginal Australia. Two of his books, The Other Side Of The Frontier (1981) and Law Of The Land (1988) have won major awards. Among his other books are Dispossession (1989) and Frontier (1987). His most recent book is Fate Of A Free People (1995).

Author bio:

Henry Reynolds, the best-known historian of Aboriginal Australia, has a string of bestsellers to his name, including The Other Side Of The Frontier, Frontier, The Law Of The Land and With The White People.

Category: Cultural studies
ISBN: 9781863739696
Table Of Contents: 1 The issue of sovereignty

2 Indigenous nationalism, self-determination

3 The development of Aboriginal identity

4 Mabo and the historians

5 Mabo and the question of pastoral leases

6 Land use and native title

7 The question of genocide
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Imprint: Allen & Unwin
Pub Date: July 1996
Page Extent: 240
Format: Paperback - B format
Age: 0 - 0
Subject: Cultural studies