Gough Whitlam symbolises the legal return of country to Gurindji traditional owners at Kalkarindji (part of Wave Hill cattle station) in August 1975 after a long and bruising fight for justice, trickling red dirt into the hand of Vincent Lingiari. Aboriginal traditional owners, who were house and stock workers, had been on strike since a walk-off in 1966. British pastoralist and ‘squatter’, Lord Vestey, fought them for their right to the land and to “pay” them in substandard food and repellent housing. While the powerful image is concentrated on the solemnity and dignity of the occasion, and the two large hands in the centre of the picture, I’m also moved by the home-made mend on Mr Lingiari’s trousers, and his too-big, very new shirt still bearing crease marks from its packet. He had just recently come home from hospital.
The gesture with the dirt was said to have been a spontaneous one by serving Prime Minister Mr Whitlam, who died today aged 98. Mr Lingiari, OAM, a stockman, musician, custodian and activist, died in 1988, aged 80.
This the photograph, in the collection of the Art Gallery of NSW, taken by Mervyn Bishop, that has become iconic in Australian history. The moment is also celebrated in the Paul Kelly/Kevin Carmody song, ‘From Little Things, Big Things Grow’
Mr Whitlam had just announced, “On this great day, I, Prime Minister of Australia, speak to you on behalf of all Australian people – all those who honour and love this land we live in. For them I want to say to you: I want this to acknowledge that we Australians have still much to do to redress the injustice and oppression that has for so long been the lot of Black Australians. Vincent Lingiari, I solemnly hand to you these deeds as proof, in Australian law, that these lands belong to the Gurindji people and I put into your hands part of the earth itself as a sign that this land will be the possession of you and your children forever.”
The State Library of Victoria holds many documents, books, pictures and relics of this era, accessible on the catalogue at www.slv.vic.gov.au.
To but see more of this. All around the world. So much injustice.
What. The actual. Fuck.
I do have a problem with the very idea of a reverse Bechdel Test. Like reverse sexism, it seems to me that you can’t have it? Like, does Maleficent fail to have two men talk about something other than a woman in a context where almost all films also fail to pass this? ‘Cause if it doesn’t, then it’s not the same as failing the Bechdel Test in reverse. More: the Bechdel Test is framed as a minimum requirement for seeing a film. A true ‘reverse Bechdel Test’ would either have a film be mandatory view (Ha!) or would have (sexist) men refusing to see it, and that latter thing? I can actually see some scumbags suggesting it as a thing. And that does make it problematic to propose that we analyze films in this way.
Like, I saw someone suggest Ophan Black might fail the reverse Bechdel Test, and… first of all, it doesn’t, but people can still feel like it does because there are so many more women on screen than we are used to seeing that people felt like it might be in some way excluding men.
Excluding men just isn’t something a single film can do. Not in the way that excluding women is totally possible for a single film to do, because it does that in a context where so many other films are excluding women as well.
I just… I dunno. I sort of like the point that’s being made, and Maleficent is magnificant in so many ways, but I sort of don’t like this as a way of making that point.
(Source: sewerclown, via sophiamcdougall)
Remember Wendy Davis?
You know, the badass democrat who fillibustered for 11 hours straight to conserve women’s rights in Texas?
Well, this wonderful and amazing woman has announced her campaign for Texas governor!
Let’s show her some goddamn support!
Would that I could vote for you!