Eligon, John: Australia through American eyes (New York Times and ABC Foreign Correspondent)

John Eligon

Australia through American eyes‘, New York Times, 26 June 2017

Journalist Eligon, who writes about race for the Times, visits the Kimberley, Murray Island, Inala (Brisbane) and other parts of Australia, talking to Indigenous Australians. The article complements the Foreign Correspondent episode of 27 June (also here). It includes interviews with teenagers in the Kimberley, Gail Mabo, Nakkiah Lui, Chelsea and Matt Bond, and others. Chelsea Bond, a lecturer at the University of Queensland, nails one point: ‘class does not remedy race’. She also recalls her father’s remark: as an Indigenous Australian, ‘you have to be ten times as good’. Youth suicide, alcohol, and the Doomadgee case (Palm Island) are also discussed.

On his journey around Australia, Eligon spoke to dozens of Indigenous millennials to learn more about their experiences. Many described Australia as a place where they had rights on paper, but not always in practice. Eligon spoke to Zeritta Jessell, Bobby Salee and Nakkiah Lui, who are all in their own way are defying stereotypes. They shared their diverse experiences with suicide, family, prison, work, freedom, welfare, success and activism. (blurb)

The Honest History Book includes chapters by Larissa Behrendt, University of Technology, Sydney, and Paul Daley, Guardian Australia, on subjects relevant to Eligon’s article.

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