This is great news. There is urgency to enable the …

Comment on Experience Aboriginal culture in the heart of the CBD by Ted Egan.

This is great news. There is urgency to enable the fluent speakers of the local First Australian languages to pass on their knowledge in this way, but additionally to be financed to “write down” their once “unwritten” languages, thereby enabling formal study for all.
In Victoria, huge sums of guilt-stricken government money is being allocated to the “rehabilitation” of old languages that sadly, are beyond revival: It’s not good enough to recognise that Grandma still remembers the word for “kangaroo”.
We have fluent speakers of total languages here in Central Australia; languages that are profound and vital to a proper understanding of the heritage and inheritance available to all residents, regardless of our colour and background.
Particularly among old Arrernte women we have generous teachers happy to run appropriate programs.
Let the government rank these teachers as at least equivalent to the fossils.
But we are running out of time.

Ted Egan Also Commented

Experience Aboriginal culture in the heart of the CBD
You are correct, Alex, tribute must be paid to earlier linguists like the Strehlows and the Albrechts; also very worthy of commendation are todays “interpreters”, many of them Gadiya. The pressing need, however, is to recognise, on an individual level, the fluent speakers of traditional languages who are also literate in English. People Like Marrkilyi (Lizzie Ellis), Nararula (Alison Anderson), the many elderly women – especially Arrernte – who are still around, active and anxious that their old languages be properly retained, especially in written form. These scholars should be paid the academic tribute of “Professorship” along with appropriate salaries and facilities. Otherwise we will follow the path of other regions in Australia, where around 300 traditional languages have gone forever. The spoken word is not enough.


Recent Comments by Ted Egan

Desert Song’s fire burns bright
Fantastic! Congratulations Erwin and Kieran for your coverage. Nerys and I are in Adelaide. I have had some surgery and doing radiotherapy until end October.
Nerys is a wonderful carer for me and this edition has made our day, while at the same time bringing on homesickness.
Keep singing, all you choirs. Special greetings to Morris and Barb.


Cops nab alleged grog runners
We’ve come a long way since Yuendumu Flagon Wagon. Or have we?


Alice town camps need not be places of misery
What were the land rights demos of the 1960s all about?
Recognition of the traditional ownership, use and occupancy of their respective land areas of First Australians, in order that they could rehabilitate themselves and their culture on their own country, on their terms.
Alice Springs is Arranta country. Housing programs for Warlpiri, Pitjantjara, Anmatjere and other groups should take place on the land areas of those people.
They have worthless pieces of paper that say they are the “traditional owners” but they don’t have the rights normally available to people who own land.
Town camps are an essential component of the dispossession process. Turn them into fringe dwellers who will acquire all the habits that enable the conquerors to say: “And we do so much for them …” Occupants of town camps have no future other than the present, where they are in the grip of Centrelink, with minimal money, where they and their children easily become prone to all forms of addiction, criminal activity and anti-social behaviour.
Bulldoze the Alice Springs town camps. Build the Bob Beadman towns where First Australians can lead normal lives.
Enable First Australians themselves to be in charge of the planning and building of those towns.


Kittles car yard hit again
When will the police learn that there is one IMMEDIATE solution to all this juvenile nighttime madness?
Six police with six dogs – two Rottweilers, two Dobermanns and two German Shepherds, on leashes, will disperse these kids in a given five minutes. Remember that I did not say “unleash the dogs”.
At the moment these fleet-footed kids know they can outwit, outrun and outsmart heavily-weighted policemen and policewomen in the rough country around Anzac Hill.
But the mere suggestion of a cheeky dog taking a slice of them will work miracles.


Do you know Charlie Hosking, aka Charlie Like?
Can’t believe that I have had nil feedback. Charlie Like was such an identity.


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