Through an Indigenous Lens

by Josie Atkinson

This podcast is of a seminar presented by Josie Atkinson at UNSW Sydney for SSSN on 28th August 2018. Josie’s paper is followed by a question and answer session facilitated by Evelyn Araluen Corr and involving the audience present on the day.

JOSIE ATKINSON is an Indigenous woman from the Gumbaynggirr Nation from the Mid-North Cost of New South Wales and a currently enrolled in a Master of Philosophy majoring in Creative Arts at the University of Wollongong. She is a trained actress and passionate supporter of education and higher degree academia.

This research focuses on an analysis of the representation of Indigenous people through three major case studies of Australian televised media dramas. In addition, these case studies examine the ways in which Indigenous Australians have been constructed for Australian audiences with an in-depth focus on gender representations; presence and absence and Indigenous-specific and Indigenous non-specific characterization as an expression of Indigeneity as a commodity.

There is a gap of academic research by Indigenous researchers on the representations of Indigenous people in this area. However, there is an abundance of research on and about Indigenous people both historically and currently conducted by non-Indigenous researchers on representations of Indigenous people. It is important for Indigenous people to represent academic discourses through an Indigenous intersectional lens

Three major case studies of television drama series will be utilized: Boney (1971-2; 1992) Neighbours (1985-), The Secret Life of Us (2001-5). Through this investigation it has been revealed that certain problems still exist in the representation of Indigenous people in televised media dramas but there have been some groundbreaking developments in the representation of Indigenous people.

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