Deathscapes

Instrumentalities of the Settler State 3e - Settler Categorisations

Deathscapes

Settler Categorisations

Amala Groom stands in bushland surrounded by thin, tall trees. Her stance is strong and defiant. She holds a framed painting of Queen Elizabeth II in front of herself, obscuring her naked body with this symbol of the crown and colonial project.

[imagecaption] dhaagun ngiyanhigin.gu nganhundhi (The land owns me), 2018. Epson ultra chrome pigment on Canson Photographique 100% cotton rag, 114 x 169 x 5cm, Edition of 5 + 1AP. Artist: Amala Groom. Image courtesy of the artist. [/imagecaption]

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‘Feminist scholars have argued that Native women’s bodies were to the settler eye, like land, and as such in the settler mind, the Native woman is rendered “unrapeable” (or, highly “rapeable”) because she was like land, matter to be extracted from, used, sullied, taken from, over and over again, something that is already violated and violatable in a great march to accumulate surplus, to so called “production”.’

Audra Simpson (2016, 6)


‘Ready access to black women was seen as one of the attractions of outback life and women were forcibly abducted in all parts of Australia. Stockmen regularly participated in ‘gin hunts’ and ‘gin sprees’, seeking Aboriginal women for sex. Even station owners were complicit in the (s)exploitation. White men were lured to employment in the rural areas by being offered the pick of the Aboriginal women on the station. Aboriginal women became viewed as a side benefit of working on remote cattle stations, with white men believing that they had unfettered licence to ‘shoot a nigger at sight or to ravish a gin.’

Larissa Behrendt (2000, 353)



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