Anthropology of Aboriginal Australia

University of Queensland

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Anthropology of Aboriginal Australia

  • Host University

    University of Queensland

  • Location

    Brisbane, Australia

  • Area of Study

    Anthropology, Australian Culture, Indigenous Studies

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Host University Units

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    Course Description
    A course on the diversity of anthropological studies of Aboriginal societies in Australia. Topics include kinship, cosmology, material culture, art, gender, native title, land rights, and anthropology's engagement in public policy.
    Course Introduction
    This course explores relations among and between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians in contemporary Australian society, with a focus on Aboriginal Australian society. We examine the topic through an anthropological lens, with special attention to the ways in which anthropologists have written about and worked with Australian Aboriginal people in applied and academic research. The course asks you to read widely and in depth in order to draw on the discourse that informs an understanding of the anthropology of Aboriginal Australia in the past and in the present.
    One of the most important themes in the course is cultural diversity in Aboriginal Australia, and case examples in lectures are used from many different areas of the Australian continent and islands; taking in remote ?outback? social realities and histories as well as urban life and politics. Considered are Aboriginal peoples? relationships to land, the process of colonisation, the work of different anthropologists in Aboriginal communities, as well as the work of anthropologists in understanding Indigenous relationships with non-Indigenous Australians. Themes such as environment, kinship, cosmology, material culture, religion, media, and gender will be discussed, in addition to concerns such as land rights, government policy, and identity politics. Generic and research skills gained in the course are transferable to social scientific studies of comparable colonial (or ?post-colonial?) societies internationally.
    ANTH2010 covers ethnographic works central to the study of Aboriginal Australia and examines key anthropological concepts and contemporary issues throughout the semester, using thematic material from ethnographic research, as well as sources from history, politics, literature and contemporary media.
    Learning Objectives
    After successfully completing this course you should be able to:
    1. Demonstrate knowledge of the diversity of Aboriginal societies in Australia by reference to examples
    2. Identify key historical and social issues in relation to Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal relations in Australia
    3. Demonstrate an awareness of ethical issues relating to research in Indigenous Australia
    4. Identify some key anthropological approaches in relation to the representation of Indigenous peoples
    5. Discuss and write critically about particular case studies, especially essential readings
    6. Skilfully engage in academic research in the library and with electronic resources
    Class Contact
    2 Lecture hours, 1 Tutorial hour

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.