Antipodes: Poetic Responses
Lives of the Papunya Tula Artists
The Dealer is The Devil
Power + Colour
Timothy Cook - Dancing with the Moon
Business and Economy (5)
Engaging Indigenous Economy
Not Just Black and White
Aboriginal Economy and Society
Aboriginal Business: Alliances in a Remote Australian Town
The Kangaroo and the Porpoise
The Legend of the Seven Sisters
Alfie’s Search for Destiny
Good Morning, Mr Sarra
Fiction, Novels (50)
Doctor Wooreddy’s Prescription for Enduring the End of the World
The Blue-Eyed Aborigine
Deep Water Tears - The Dreaming Series Book 1
A Doctor’s Dream
The Story of Yudum
First Taste—How Indigenous Australians Learned About Grog
Yatdjuligin - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nursing and Midwifery Care
Conspiracy of Silence
Rivers and Resilience
Survival in Our Own Land
Journey to Horseshoe Bend
Humour, Cartoons (2)
Shipwreck, Sailors and 60,000 Years
Discovering Aboriginal Plant Use
Treading Lightly: The Hidden Wisdom of the World’s Oldest People
Country of the Heart
Aboriginal Australia Wall Map
Aboriginal ways of using English
Sign Languages of Aboriginal Australia
The Australian National Dictionary
Law & Justice (4)
Gone for a Song: Death and Desperation in the Deep North
The Law of the Land
Indigenous People, Crime and Punishment
Arresting Incarceration: Pathways out of Indigenous Imprisonment
Singing the Coast
The Wailing—A National Black Oral History
Paddy’s Road: Life Stories of Patrick Dodson
Racial Folly-A Twentieth Century Aboriginal Family
A Widi Woman
Personal Reports and Experiences (39)
Iwenhe Tyerrtye - What it Means to be an Aboriginal Person
Black Swan: A Koorie Woman’s Life
A Tear in the Soul
Footprints: The Journey of Lucy and Percy Pepper
Culture Crisis: Anthropology and Politics in Aboriginal Australia
In the Absence of Treaty
Spirituality & Poetry (11)
Smoke Encrypted Whispers
Lemons in the Chicken Wire
Aboriginal Stars of the Turf
Legends - The AFL Indigenous Team of the Century 1905-2005
Black and Proud
Textbooks, Teaching, Studies (45)
Teaching Indigenous Students
Different White People: Radical Activism for Aboriginal Rights 1946-1972
King Brown Country: The Betrayal of Papunya
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)
- 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.