King Brown Country: The Betrayal of Papunya

By Russell Skelton | Go to book overview

Chapter 15
PAPUNYA AFTER THE INTERVENTION

Twelve weeks after the emergency response was announced, Alison Anderson gave it her enthusiastic endorsement as she and an SBS-TV reporter sped down the gravel road to Papunya. In a relaxed and expansive mood, she declared: ‘Aboriginal affairs should be a national emergency every day … I don’t think Aboriginal affairs should ever be taken off the top [of the] agenda as a national issue.’ She then said something she had never said publicly before: ‘I think all levels of government, all indigenous people—some of us have been leaders for years—we’ve all got to take responsibility and take the blame for the things that are happening to indigenous people, as well.’1

It was an unexpectedly candid admission from a politician who had forged her reputation in the era of self-management, a policy whose failures had triggered the emergency intervention. Now, as the self-management system was being dismantled, Anderson urged Aboriginal people to step up to the plate and take responsibility for their fate. Brough’s intervention, she said, was a wake-up call for all Australians. Asked about child abuse,

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King Brown Country: The Betrayal of Papunya
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Introduction vii
  • Chapter 1 - First Encounters 1
  • Chapter 2 - Luritja Lady 13
  • Chapter 3 - The Whitefellas’ Fault 19
  • Chapter 4 - Mercenaries, Missionaries and Misfits 33
  • Chapter 5 - Motorcar Dreaming 55
  • Chapter 6 - Winter of Discontent 69
  • Chapter 7 - We Decide Who Comes 81
  • Chapter 8 - The Petrol-Sniffing Capital of Australia 91
  • Chapter 9 - The Consul’s Horse 103
  • Chapter 10 - Anderson Rolls the Dice 123
  • Chapter 11 - Love Hurts 135
  • Chapter 12 - The Loss of Acumen 143
  • Chapter 13 - Back to the Future 161
  • Chapter 14 - ‘Hurricane Katrina’ 177
  • Chapter 15 - Papunya after the Intervention 187
  • Epilogue - The Biggest Day in Nt History 203
  • Author’s Note 217
  • Timeline 219
  • Notes 227
  • Bibliography 241
  • Acknowledgements 245
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