Indeginous Australia: Invasion or Settlement?

Essay by surbhiiJunior High, 9th gradeA-, November 2008

download word file, 3 pages 3.0

For generations Australians have been taught to believe the country was peacefully settled by Europeans. Discuss whether this is true or not.

Majority of Australians are taught to believe that Australia was a peacefully settled country by Europeans. Only Ancient Indigenous Australian communities know for a fact from their ancestors, that this is not true. Indigenous Australians lived in the country for thousands of years before the Europeans' invasion. They believed the land owned them not they owned the land like the settlers believed. The indigenous people respected the land and cared for it, they only used and killed what they needed and were smart resource planners. The developed new skills and immunity to the land and weather condition. When the Europeans arrived they considered the land as terra-nullius (no-mans land) which was free for the taking and they dis-respected and considered the local indigenous societies as nothing. This was also a gain for the Europeans as they didn't own any land in the area yet.

Aborigines are natives to Australia and Tasmania. They have lived there for about 35,000 to 70,000 years. Their skin and hair are both dark. There are about 500 recorded tribes. Aboriginal tribes didn't usually stay in one place for long, moving to watering places and setting up camp there. Aborigines lived in family groups and clans. Each clan has a place on their land where their spirits return when they die. They have to protect these places so they won't upset their ancestral beings. The men were custodians, tool-makers, and hunters. The women took care of the children and gathered and fixed their food. The Aborigines used the land wisely and knew when to harvest the many plants they ate. Dingoes guarded their homes and helped the men hunt. The Aborigines were also traders.