This year I will be partaking in the Australian Women Writers Challenge which ‘was set up to help overcome gender bias in the reviewing of books by Australian women’. Throughout 2017 I will be reading and reviewing at least 6 books which are authored by female Australians and are related to the following subject matters:
Last week I attended a lecture by Dr. Brett Baker which was part of the University of Melbourne Office of Research Ethics and Integrity’s seminar series. The title of the lecture was ‘Ethical guidelines for researchers working with Aboriginal communities’ and it reflected upon interpersonal challenges in addition to ethical guidelines related to research within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
I was asked to prepare a video presentation of my research for the Masters of Education students of Australian Catholic University. A transcript of the presentation is included below with links to useful resources for those who are interested.
As researchers in the interpretivist paradigm we are expected to grapple and come to some sort of understanding of our participants’ worldview. This strikes me as an impossible task. When asked, my supervisors assured me that it is in fact impossible, but as long as we accept that we have tried our best and engage in reflective practice that our research will be robust. I find it difficult to come to terms with these concepts especially since my research focuses on Aboriginal culture. I feel as though it would be the height of stupidity to pretend to have even a basic understanding of their worldview. Although my professors raised the point that perhaps I am actually doing the Aboriginal community a disservice by assuming that we have vastly different worldviews. How do I navigate the line between ‘othering’ the Indigenous community and respecting the fact that cultural differences exist?
In 2008, then Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd delivered a ground breaking apology to the Stolen Generations. Many thought that this would be a momentous step toward reconciliation and a fresh start for Aboriginal Australians.
Instead, removal rates of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children have increased by 65 per cent since Kevin Rudd said sorry to the Stolen Generations. This has largely gone unreported by the Australian media.