Daring Ideas: Is Land Rights Enough?

Wran give us our Land, photo by Elaine Kitchener.
Wran give us our Land, photo by Elaine Kitchener.

Organisation Name: History Council of NSW, Cosmopolitan Civil Societies Research Centre, UTS and State Library of NSW

Event Type: Seminar

When: Wednesday, 10 July 2013 from 10:00am to 3:00pm

Where: State Library of NSW, Macquarie Street , Sydney

Cost: General Free

Contact: Mandy Kretzschmar, 02 9252 8715, admin@historycouncilnsw.org.au,


In the 30th year of the NSW Aboriginal Land Rights Act, this symposium brings together leading academics and public intellectuals in critical debate about the significance of land rights in a radically different social, cultural and economic order to that which gave rise to the land rights movement in the 1970s.
Held in NAIDOC Week 2013, which this year marks the 40th anniversary of the Yirrkala people’s bark petitions to secure their land the following speakers will contribute to this ideas forum:
·       Dr Aden Ridgeway, former CEO of the NSW Aboriginal Land Council
·       Tony McAvoy, Barrister and land rights litigator
·       Dr Heidi Norman, Senior Lecturer, University of Technology, Sydney
·       Madeleine McGrady, land rights activist; Gomeroi Native Title applicant
·       Steve Wright, Registrar, Office of the Registrar, Aboriginal Land Rights Act

The land rights movement in NSW is rated as the most dynamic Aboriginal movement in Australian history. It was inter-generational; in broad alliance with progressive movements; a united and coherent campaign, informed by modern activist skills and careful engagement with the formal institutions of power.  It was a demand imbued with incredible hopes and expectations for a better future. It was also a movement that, in part, realised its aims.

The laws that came into effect from 1983 brought Aboriginal people into new and different relations with the state, civil society, one another and with the market.  Over time, the thirty-year statute has changed, new laws have come into existence (such as Native Title) new ideas now circulate about the role of Government with the market more welcome remedy to address disadvantage. The invited panelists will share daring and controversial perspectives informed by scholarship, legal practice and administrative experience, on the future for Aboriginal land rights.

Morning tea and lunch will be provided.

Co-presented by the History Council of NSW, Cosmopolitan Civil Societies Research Centre, UTS, and the State Library of NSW.