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Legacies of Indigenous Resistance

Pemulwuy, Jandamarra and Yagan in Australian Indigenous Film, Theatre and Literature

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Matteo Dutto

This book explores the ways in which Australian Indigenous filmmakers, performers and writers work within their Indigenous communities to tell the stories of early Indigenous resistance leaders who fought against British invaders and settlers, thus keeping their legacies alive and connected to community in the present. It offers the first comprehensive and trans-disciplinary analysis of how the stories of Pemulwuy, Jandamarra and Yagan (Bidjigal, Bunuba and Noongar freedom fighters, respectively) have been retold in the past forty years across different media. Combining textual and historical analysis with original interviews with Indigenous cultural producers, it foregrounds the multimodal nature of Indigenous storytelling and the dynamic relationship of these stories to reclamations of sovereignty in the present. It adds a significant new chapter to the study of Indigenous history-making as political action, while modelling a new approach to stories of frontier resistance leaders and providing a greater understanding of how the decolonizing power of Indigenous screen, stage and text production connects past, present and future acts of resistance.

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About the author

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Matteo Dutto is Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the School of Languages, Literatures, Cultures and Linguistics at Monash University. His current research explores how cultural producers collaborate with Indigenous, migrant and multiethnic communities to produce transmedia and transcultural counter-narratives of belonging and identity. His work has been published in Studies in Documentary Film and Fulgor and he recently collaborated on the production of the Australian Indigenous Film and Television (AIFTV) online knowledge sharing platform (aiftv-research.net).

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