Once again we come to the end of Indigenous Literature Week 2013 at ANZ LitLovers, and I would like to thank all those who showed their support for NAIDOC week by reading, reviewing, blogging, commenting, tweeting and advertising this event in social media.
There was a depressing setback on the eve of NAIDOC Week – our Prime Minister had made the offensive claim that Australia was unsettled before the arrival of the First Fleet, and like many others I felt that this insult to our indigenous people could not have been worse timed. But I was heartened by the widespread condemnation of his remarks, by the dignity with which Aboriginal representatives responded, and by the way NAIDOC celebrations to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples went ahead with good will and enthusiasm just the same.
My aim in hosting an Indigenous Literature Week is to encourage people to seek out and enjoy the books that indigenous authors have contributed to Australian and New Zealand literature, and so I was delighted to see that indigenous authors have responded to Anita Heiss’s question ‘What book do you think every Australian should read?’ with a wealth of great reading to savour. You can see their recommendations at Whispering Gums where there is also a great article called In Conversation with Black Words.
The reviews readers have contributed have all been added to this site’s database of indigenous reading resources. This database continues to grow -including everything from children’s books to YA; from memoir to history: and fiction of all kinds. The reviews which readers have so generously contributed is what makes this a marvellous resource – it’s not just a list of titles, it’s word-of-mouth recommendations.
I will be monitoring the reviews page until the end of July and will add any additional reviews to the database if you contact me using me using the Mr Linky button and comments box on the reviews page.
I will also be updating the database of indigenous reading resources when new books come to my attention. You might like to bookmark this page because you can also use it to access links to
- the AustLit database BlackWords,
- the reading list at Anita Heiss’s blog,
- the helpful list at Christchurch City Library or
- Yvonne Perkins list of histories and biographies.
Thanks again, everyone!