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Kahlil Gibran The Reluctant Visionary
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The Southern Cross is the most famous constellation in the southern hemisphere. Ever since colonisation it’s been claimed, appropriated and hotly-contested for ownership by a radical range of Australian groups. But for Aboriginal people the meaning of this heavenly body is deeply spiritual. And just about completely unknown. For a start, the Southern Cross isn’t even a cross - it’s a totem that’s deeply woven into the spiritual and practical lives of Aboriginal people. Now one of Australia’s leading film-makers, Warwick Thornton, tackles this fiery subject head on in a bold, provocative and poetic essay-film. “We Don’t Need a Map” asks tough questions about the place of the Southern Cross constellation in the Australian psyche. Imbued with Warwick’s cavalier spirit, this is a fun and thought-provoking ride through Australia’s cultural and political landscape.
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In this country, the Aboriginal story is often buried deep beneath the accepted 228-year Australian historical narrative. It’s not that the Australian story is wrong, it’s just that it’s a wee bit one-sided. Getting all historical, Aboriginal filmmaker Trisha Morton-Thomas bites back at Australian history. Bite-sized stories from first settlement to federation, from the expansion of Australia across the states to today, give a fresh look at the involvement of Aboriginal people in our country’s history. Comedy including skits and cartoons are balanced with serious moments of reflection and poignancy, creating an eclectic blend of Australian history that will appeal to all palates.
Connection To Country
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Connection to Country follows a group of Indigenous people from the Pilbara as they battle to preserve Australia's unique cultural heritage from the ravages of a booming mining industry. In the heart of Western Australia, the Burrup Peninsula hosts the largest concentration of rock art in the world; a dramatic, ancient landscape so sacred that it shouldn't be looked upon at all except by its Traditional Owners. In recent times this site of incalculable aesthetic and historical value is being threatened by industrialisation and development. The Burrup has become home to salt mines, iron ore port facilities and one of Australia’s largest gas plants. But the people of the Pilbara are fighting back on behalf of this most sacred of places and other important sites on their country - documenting the rock art, recording their thalu (increase) sites and battling to get their unique cultural heritage recognised and celebrated. Moreover Connection to Country is a one-hour documentary about the unbroken connection to country that is still surviving today as much as it was 70,000 years ago when in the words of the old people 'the world was soft'. The Galharra or skin system that governs culture and heritage is right at the heart of it too. The story explores how the WA State Government weakened the Aboriginal Heritage Ac (1972) without due process in order to make new mining projects easier to get started. Ultimately however, the main concern of Connection to Country is to explain the relationship that exists between Indigenous people and their land. People on their country interact with the land today like they have always done continuously and unbroken in time. As the old people always say, ‘we belong to the land, the land don’t belong to us’.