Day time reckoning: “Light time” in traditional Noongar culture

“Light time” could be described as a Noongar way of time reckoning using a system of daily categories based on the intensity of light from dawn to dusk.  ‘Wanting to know the ideas of the blacks of the origin of mankind, I got him [Mokare] this evening after some difficulty to understand my questions, when … Continued

Toodyay – A Little Bird’s Song

History is highly dependent on how we interpret the past and what we want to believe now.  As long as we can remember there has been a controversy over the meaning and origin of the name Toodyay.  We have been led to believe by our local Council that the name derives from a Ballardong term … Continued

Typha root: an ancient nutritious food in Noongar culture

In our paper on bardi grubs we mooted the possibility that indigenous people of southwestern Australia practised the earliest known form of insect husbandry. It is not hard to imagine that these same people also practised a type of incipient agriculture, as noted by Grey (1841: 294) with his reference to the cultivation of yunjeedie … Continued

The conveyor of souls: the Pied Cormorant

“… in the Faroe Islands, Siberia, and among the Ipiutak of Alaska, for example, diving birds are thought to ferry spirits of the dead to the next world, situated under water rather than in the heavens”

Root Bark Eating in Southwestern Australia

Root bark is a little understood bush tucker that was once consumed by the indigenous Nyoongar people of inland southwestern Australia.1 The bark was collected to extract nutritious plant sugars found in the inner bark and vascular cambium of the roots of certain species of Eucalyptus trees.  The living inner bark and vascular tissue forms … Continued

Report on the “Owl stone” Aboriginal site at Red Hill, northeast of Perth

‘Aboriginal culture and tradition is inseparable from the land. When land and its natural features are destroyed, a large part of Aboriginal history and culture is destroyed. The reality is that not only are Aboriginal people losing their physical space but they are losing the physical manifestations of their history, culture and identity – and … Continued

Factoring Aboriginal Environmental Values in Major Planning Projects

‘We’re not against development….Why can’t you mob listen to us and meet us halfway. You can have your development and we can keep our bushland and keep the rivers clean for your children and ours. What we are against is cutting down all the vegetation, dirty­ing up the rivers and groundwater and planting all those … Continued

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