Antipodes: Poetic Responses
Macquarie PEN Anthology of Aboriginal Literature
Portraits From a Land Without People
Art + Soul
Steady Steady - The Life and Music of Seaman Dan
Power + Colour
Between Indigenous Australia and Europe: John Mawurndjul
Business and Economy (3)
Aboriginal Business: Alliances in a Remote Australian Town
How to Start a Successful Aboriginal Business in Australia
Aboriginal Economy and Society
The Glow Worm Cave
Deadly D & Justice Jones: The Search
Digger J Jones
Sam, Grace and the Shipwreck
Good Morning, Mr Sarra
Fiction, Novels (44)
A Kinchela Boy
A Doctor’s Dream
First Taste—How Indigenous Australians Learned About Grog
The Story of Yudum
Defending Whose Country?
Rock Art of the Dreamtime
Van Diemen’s Land - An Aboriginal History
Humour, Cartoons (2)
Shipwreck, Sailors and 60,000 Years
The Biggest Estate on Earth
Protest, Land Rights and Riots
The Power of Bones
Fire and the Story of Burning Country
Aboriginal Australia Wall Map
Aboriginal ways of using English
Law & Justice (3)
Arresting Incarceration: Pathways out of Indigenous Imprisonment
Gone for a Song: Death and Desperation in the Deep North
Indigenous People, Crime and Punishment
Singing the Coast
Kin - A Real People’s History of Our Nation
Personal Reports and Experiences (27)
The Secrets We Keep
Am I Black Enough For You?
This Is What We Said
The Hard Light of Day: An Artist’s Story of Friendships in Arrernte Country
In the Absence of Treaty
The Intervention: An anthology
Spirituality & Poetry (9)
Islam Dreaming: Indigenous Muslims in Australia
Love Dreaming & Other Poems
The Lamb Enters the Dreaming
Liam Jurrah - From Yuendumu to the MCG
Legends - The AFL Indigenous Team of the Century 1905-2005
Brotherboys: The Story of Jim and Phillip Krakouer
Aboriginal Stars of the Turf
Textbooks, Teaching, Studies (43)
A Decision to Discriminate: Aboriginal Disempowerment in the Northern Territory
The Melbourne Dreaming
Aboriginal Australia and the Torres Strait Islands
Are textbooks still useful?
Teaching has come a long way from purely textbook-based to spanning text, video, audio and games. With students’ attention spans decreasing and information breaking down into smaller bite sizes teachers are questioning the usefulness of books at school.
Textbooks still have a few advantages:
- Good for novice teachers. Beginning teachers can benefit from a detailed outline of the material to be covered and the design of each lesson.
- Organised units of work. A textbook gives you all the plans and lessons you need to cover a topic in some detail.
- Structured information. Books provide you with a chronological presentation of information. They usually contain a detailed sequence of teaching procedures that tell you what to do and when to do it.
Good textbooks are excellent teaching aids. They’re a resource for both teachers and students.
Some teachers found that students are not motivated to read textbooks. They have had success with phasing out books and replacing them with practical exercises that are relevant to their students’ daily life experiences.
It is probably good to not use textbooks as the only resource for students. Use it as a guide, not a mandate and be free to modify, change, eliminate, or add to the material in the textbook using videos, films, music and interactive materials.
Choosing an Aboriginal textbook
In my opinion there is nothing better than learning directly from Aboriginal authors. I have witnessed their pain and suffering, their resilience and creativity as well as their joy and community by reading first-hand accounts of their lives. For this reason I have marked the author’s heritage accordingly for all books listed on CreativeSpirits.info.
Be careful with books by non-Aboriginal authors. Do they have an agenda? Are they based on myths or old colonial ideas? Are they painting Aboriginal culture only in a positive, glorifying light?
Even contemporary curriculum-approved books can get it wrong and teach “seasons and animals” followed directly by “Aboriginal seasons”, perpetuating the idea that Aboriginal people are somehow linked to flora and fauna.
It might be a good idea to talk to Aboriginal teachers to learn about their perspective and check if they have recommendations.
Finding a book
I’ve tried to help you find the book you are after with the following resources:
For the latest book releases on Aboriginal Australia shop securely in my Aboriginal Book Store.
The Australian National University has studies on particular themes or regions, or a series of articles on single subjects of contemporary Indigenous topics offered as free Indigenous books for download.
Can’t find your favourite Aboriginal books?
Try a search at Fishpond, Australia’s largest supplier, cheaper than Amazon.
Or search a list of Aboriginal books from the Aboriginal Studies Press on Fishpond.
Aboriginal book publishers
Black Ink Press (Townsville, Queensland)
Magabala Books (Broome, Northern Territory)
IAD Press (Alice Springs, Northern Territory)
Aboriginal Studies Press (Canberra, Australian Captial Territory)
Keeaira Press (Southport, Queensland)
JB Books (Marleston, South Australia)
Books for the Australian Curriculum
If you are looking for books about Aboriginal history and culture for the Australian Curriculum check out Booktopia's collection of textbooks.
Amazon offers a number of educational teaching books.
Magabala Books offers teacher's notes to some of its children's books.