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Uncle Fred Deeral as little old man in the film The Message, by Zakpage, to be shown at the National Museum of Australia in April. Nik Lachajczak of Zakpage

An honest reckoning with Captain Cook’s legacy won’t heal things overnight. But it’s a start

An honest reckoning with Captain Cook’s legacy won’t heal things overnight. But it’s a start. The Conversation41.4 MB (download)
The impact of 1770 has never eased for Aboriginal people. It was a collision of catastrophic proportions.
A scene from the author’s film The Message, commissioned by the National Museum of Australia. At the first encounter in Botany Bay, two Gweagal warriors threw stones and spears at Cook, saying ‘warrawarrawa’, meaning ‘they are all dead’. Nik Lachajczak of Zakpage

‘They are all dead’: for Indigenous people, Cook’s voyage of ‘discovery’ was a ghostly visitation

Incidents from Cook’s first voyage highlight themes relevant in Indigenous-settler relations today: environmental care, reconciliation and governance. This collision of beliefs, it seems, wasn’t lost on Cook.
Aboriginal elder Major Sumner sits outside Liverpool’s World Museum with a box containing the skull of an Australian indigenous person, taken from Australia between 1902 and 1904. Phil Noble/Reuters

Museums are returning indigenous human remains but progress on repatriating objects is slow

The question of repatriating objects is clearly more complex than returning human remains. It needs more debate, and more creative interventions to move beyond the current impasse.

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