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AIS2025 - Activism, Politics and Indigenous Australia

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate Faculty of Arts

Leader: Andrew Gunstone


Gippsland First semester 2007 (Day)
Gippsland First semester 2007 (Off-campus)


This Unit analyses two broad, interrelated themes: firstly, the political struggles and activism of Indigenous peoples; and secondly, the numerous Government policies that have affected Indigenous peoples. The first section of the Unit examines these themes from a historical perspective, exploring issues such as protectionism, the 1938 Day of Mourning, assimilation, the 1967 Referendum, self-determination and the Aboriginal Tent Embassy. The second section of the Unit discusses several contemporary Indigenous issues that relate to the two themes. These issues include: land rights, native title, deaths in custody, the stolen generation, reconciliation, treaty, welfare reform and sovereignty.


On successful completion of this unit, students will:

  1. Understand the politics of Indigenous and non-Indigenous relations from the Invasion to the present day, particularly the connections between Indigenous political activism and Government policies on Indigenous issues.
  2. Have developed an awareness of the need to analyse and understand contemporary Indigenous issues in a critical historical context.
  3. Be able to analyse a range of complicated, contemporary Indigenous issues and to argue their own viewpoint on these issues.


Essay 1 (700 words): 15%
Essay 2 (1800 words): 40%
Examination (2 hours): 45%

Contact hours

2 hour seminar per week


12 points at first year level any any discipline