New Internationalist

Full Circle

September 2002

There is no hint of defeatism in this title, no sense of merely ending up where you began. The full circle instead represents the unity and comprehensiveness of the rich, ancient tapestry of indigenous Australian kinship, land and culture and how this has survived decades of forced assimilation.

Edie Wright has compiled the stories of her family over three generations. She uses these oral histories to trace her family’s connection with the remote Kimberley coast and re-establish ties with her Cape York people. Biography fleshes out the daily realities of living as aliens in your own land and provides insight into indigenous history over the entire 20th century.

During three generations her family lived through no fewer than 40 different government acts and amendments, many of which were overwhelming in impact. Government policy dispersed indigenous families, bringing both grief and hardship, and included the forced removal of native children from their families: the ‘stolen generation’.

The scale of this tragedy of displaced lives is only slowly coming to be understood, especially in terms of how powerfully it affects indigenous Australians today. There have been huge disruptions in communities and culture. The tapestry has been scuffed threadbare in some patches and wantonly vandalized in others.

Edie Wright’s style is powerful and unpretentious. Reading these stories is like sitting in on a family get-together – but thanks to her openness and generosity, as a welcome guest rather than voyeur.

Front cover of New Internationalist magazine, issue 349 This column was published in the September 2002 issue of New Internationalist. To read more, buy this issue or subscribe.

Never miss another story! Get our FREE fortnightly eNews

Comments on Full Circle

Leave your comment


  • Maximum characters allowed: 5000
  • Simple HTML allowed: bold, italic, and links

Registration is quick and easy. Plus you won’t have to re-type the blurry words to comment!
Register | Login

...And all is quiet.

Subscribe to Comments for this articleArticle Comment Feed RSS 2.0

Guidelines: Please be respectful of others when posting your reply.

Full Circle Fact File
Product information by Edie Wright
Publisher Fremantle Arts Centre Press
Product number ISBN 186368329-1
Star rating3
Product link

Get our free fortnightly eNews


Videos from visionOntv’s globalviews channel.

Related articles

Recently in Books

All Books

Popular tags

All tags

This article was originally published in issue 349

New Internationalist Magazine issue 349
Issue 349

More articles from this issue

New Internationalist Magazine Issue 436

If you would like to know something about what's actually going on, rather than what people would like you to think was going on, then read the New Internationalist.

– Emma Thompson –

A subscription to suit you

Save money with a digital subscription. Give a gift subscription that will last all year. Or get yourself a free trial to New Internationalist. See our choice of offers.