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Type: Theses
Title: Minya wunyi gu wonga
Author: Coleman, Dylan
Issue Date: 2011
School/Discipline: School of Humanities
Abstract: This thesis consists of two works: a fictionalized biography and an exegesis. The creative work, minya wunyi gu wonga, is set in the 1940s and early 1950s and is based on the early years of my mother, Mercy Coleman, who grew up on Koonibba Aboriginal Lutheran Mission on the far west coast of South Australia. The narrative is told in Aboriginal English from the point of view of young Grace. Its central themes are identity and survival. Grace is born to a Kokatha Aboriginal woman, Ada, and an already married Anglo-Celtic father, Old Rod. Old Rod‘s relationship to Grace and her sisters is shouded in secrecy due to the shame of their illegitimacy. The era in which Grace grows up is one of strict government policies regulating the lives of Aboriginal people: the Aboriginies Protection Act and, later, the Assimilation Policy. The lives of Grace, her siblings and her mother are also constrained by the mainstream conservative social mores of a remote rural community in the mid-twentieth century. The narrative moves through a maze of questions, discoveries and betrayals that fuel self-loathing and shame. Grace eventually unravels the truth about Old Rod and discovers the complexity of her identity. The theme of survival is a strong and consistent thread throughout the narrative. The exegesis documents and explores the development of minya wunyi gu wonga from the perspective of an Aboriginal daughter working with her Aboriginal mother to tell the mother‘s story. In keeping with Aboriginal traditions, the exegesis incorporates a running dialogue between daughter and mother, with reflective sequences that explore Indigenous/Black and other related texts. It also explores critical theory and its implications for their lives and the text being created. Several connected questions are addressed in the exegesis. Can we as Aboriginal people heal from trans-generational trauma by participating in the process of creating a literary narrative? What approaches/strategies/frameworks can be applied to research to best reach this outcome? To what extent is 're-authoring‘ or ‘re-visioning‘ our stories liberating and what are the implications for this process for the broader community?
Advisor: Hosking, Susan Elizabeth
Harrow, Janet Gail
Jose, Nicholas
Treagus, Mandy
Dissertation Note: Thesis (Ph.D.) -- University of Adelaide, School of Humanities, 2011.
Keywords: creative writing
Aboriginal women
Australian Aboriginal
Australian Aboriginal women's biography
inter-generational trauma
narrative as healing
South Australia
Description: Section 1: Novel: minya wunyi gu wonga -- Section 2: Exegesis: Narrative as healing: centering the Aboriginal voice: Exegesis for minya wunyi gu wonga
Provenance: This electronic version is made publicly available by the University of Adelaide in accordance with its open access policy for student theses. Copyright in this thesis remains with the author. This thesis may incorporate third party material which has been used by the author pursuant to Fair Dealing exceptions. If you are the owner of any included third party copyright material you wish to be removed from this electronic version, please complete the take down form located at:
Appears in Collections:Research Theses

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