Aboriginal Writing

Subject AIND20006 (2010)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2010.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2010:

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

On Campus

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 2.5 A 1.5-hour lecture and a 1-hour tutorial per week
Total Time Commitment: 96
Prerequisites: Completion of 100-181 Australian Indigenous Studies at first year or one of the Faculty of Arts' Interdisciplinary Foundtion (IDF) subjects.
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: 670-325 Aboriginal Writing
Core Participation Requirements: For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry. The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the 3Disability Liaison Unit website: 4http://www.services.unimelb.edu.au/disability/


Mr Philip Morrissey


Philip Morrissey

Subject Overview:

This subject studies Aboriginal fiction, poetry and drama, as well as life stories and criticism, focusing on questions of reading positions (particularly for non-Aboriginal students) and representation. It pays particular attention to the diversity of Aboriginal writing in terms of form, content, voice and place and examines the manner in which the reception of Aboriginal texts has been conditioned by political and economic factors. On completion of this subject students should understand the problematics of Aboriginal writing in the context of postcolonial Australia, and its relation to everyday life.


Students who complete this subject will:

  • develop appropriate skills in reading Aboriginal English, creole and vernacular expressions;
  • appreciate the diversity of Aboriginal texts with respect to content, form and discourse;
  • develop an informed reading position capable of critique yet sensitive to the politics of Aboriginal writing.

Assessment: Tutorial participation and a 10-minute class presentation, 10%, an essay of 1500 words, 30% (due mid-semester), and an essay of 2500 words, 60% (due at the end of the semester). Students are required to attend a minimum of nine tutorials in order to qualify to have their written work assessed. Students are advised to consult the following web address for details of assessment penalties which apply to this subject http://www.services.unimelb.edu.au/policy/assessment/policy/penalties.html.
Prescribed Texts:

Prescribed Texts:

  • Bran Nue Dae (J Chi), Currency
  • No Sugar (J Davis), Currency
  • My Place (S Morgan), Fremantle Arts
  • Gularabulu (Muecke & Roe), Fremantle Arts
  • Shark (B Pascoe), Magabala
  • True Country (K Scott), Fremantle Arts
  • Watershed (F Bayet-Charlton), IAD
  • Swallow the Air (T Winch), UQP
  • Plains of Promise (A Wright), UQP
  • Sweet Water ........ Stolen Land (McLaren, Magabala)
Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills: Students who successfully complete this subject will:
  • have developed an understanding of relevant critical theories and methods;
  • be able to work effectively as an individual and member of class;
  • be competent in the use of a wide range of research applications and resources;
  • communicate complex ideas clearly and comprehensively;
  • produce high quality written material in a timely manner.
Notes: This subject is available to Bachelor of Arts (Continuing) students at either level 2 or 3 in order to complete a major in Australian Indigenous Studies or English.
Related Course(s): Bachelor of Arts(Media and Communications)
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Australian Indigenous Studies
Australian Indigenous Studies
Australian Indigenous Studies
Australian Indigenous Studies Major

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