Document Type

Article

Abstract

This thesis explores the relationship that has developed over the past 200 years between the Aboriginal people and the people of Australia. It looks at the reasons as to why and how Australia remained a “Terra Nullius”, or land belonging to no one, for so long, when in fact it is proven that the Aborigines had been on the land prior to colonization. This paper investigates the Aboriginal people’s struggle for ownership and ties to the land that was taken from them by the British in 1788. It also looks at the lifestyle of the Aboriginal people prior to British colonization and the effects that came from colonization. It highlights three major events that have occurred which are unique and demonstrate the ongoing struggle of the Aboriginal people. Those three important events are the "Stolen generation", or a government policy that forced the removal of Aboriginal children from their homes, the Mabo case, or the largest fight that went to the High Court to prove Aboriginal ownership to the lands in Australia, and the 2008 Apology made by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to the Aboriginal people. Through the examination of these major events and the past history this paper will highlight the distinctive relationship that exists still today in Australia and what can be done to mend the divided country of Australia in the future.

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