Antipodes: Poetic Responses
Indigenous Etchings—Black and Sexy
This Country Anytime Anywhere
Battarbee and Namatjira
How Aborigines Invented the Idea of Contemporary Art
Gurrumul: His Life and Music
Business and Economy (5)
Aboriginal Economy and Society
Engaging Indigenous Economy
Aboriginal Business: Alliances in a Remote Australian Town
How to Start a Successful Aboriginal Business in Australia
Our World—Bardi-Jaawi Life at Ardiyooloon
The Legends of Moonie Jarl
Scaly-tailed Possum and Echidna
Cyclone Fever: Mates
Good Morning, Mr Sarra
Fiction, Novels (52)
Not Meeting Mr Right
Scream Black Murder
The Oldest Song in the World
First Taste—How Indigenous Australians Learned About Grog
Yatdjuligin - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nursing and Midwifery Care
Traditional Healers of the Central Desert: Ngangkari
Healers of Arnhem Land
Atomic Thunder - The Maralinga Story
Frontier: Aborigines, Settlers and Land
Handful of Sand: The Gurindji Struggle, After the Walk-off
Humour, Cartoons (2)
Shipwreck, Sailors and 60,000 Years
The Power of Bones
Treading Lightly: The Hidden Wisdom of the World’s Oldest People
Something About Emus
What Do We Want? A Political History of Aboriginal Land Rights in NSW
The Australian National Dictionary
Aboriginal ways of using English
Aboriginal Australia Wall Map
Sign Languages of Aboriginal Australia
Law & Justice (4)
Indigenous People, Crime and Punishment
The Law of the Land
Gone for a Song: Death and Desperation in the Deep North
Arresting Incarceration: Pathways out of Indigenous Imprisonment
Singing the Coast
Us Women, Our Ways, Our World
Racial Folly-A Twentieth Century Aboriginal Family
Personal Reports and Experiences (42)
Orphaned by the Colour of My Skin
My Bundjalung People
Of Ashes and Rivers That Flow to the Sea
Pictures From My Memory
In Black & White Australians All at the Crossroads
Everything You Need To Know About The Referendum To Recognise Indigenous Australians
Fighting Hard—The Victorian Aborigines Advancement League
Spirituality & Poetry (13)
The Lamb Enters the Dreaming
White Christ Black Cross
Love Dreaming & Other Poems
Black Crow: The Andrew McLeod Story
The Aboriginal Soccer Tribe
Aborigines & the Sport of Kings
Dizzy: The Jason Gillespie Story
Textbooks, Teaching, Studies (46)
Gunyah, Goondie and Wurley
Beyond White Guilt
Dialogue About Land Justice
Aboriginal Australia and the Torres Strait Islands
The Melbourne Dreaming
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. The Digital Book Index also keeps a list of free Aboriginal books.
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)
- Budburra Books (Murgon, Queensland)
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.