Accepted paper:

'Who you is? Work and Identity in Aboriginal NSW'

Authors:

Lorraine Gibson (Macquarie University )

Paper short abstract:

This paper will offer an ethnographically grounded examination of the intersections between work/employment and identity for Indigenous people living across rural, regional and urban locations in New South Wales, Australia.

Paper long abstract:

Ideas and practices relating to work, productivity, leisure and consumption are a source of much disagreement and ill-feeling between Indigenous and non-indigenous people in Australia. For dominant western cultures, labor in its most common guise of 'work' offers a cogent means through which people come to know themselves and become known to others (Crawford 1985). How does this notion translate to Indigenous social realms? This paper will offer an ethnographically grounded examination of the intersections between work/employment and identity for Indigenous people living across rural, regional and urban locations in New South Wales, Australia. What does it mean to be a productive and valued person within Aboriginal society and in what ways is this tied to and/or antithetical to participation in the mainstream economy? How are Aboriginal people appropriating ideas of work and productivity as a means to forging a particular identity?

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Indigenous participation in Australian frontier economies