Patterns of Mythical Reconstruction in Oodgeroo Nunukul's Dreamtime

V. Bharathi Harishankar


Bharathi Harishankar looks at Oodgeroo Nunukul’s use of reversal and parody in her collection of aboriginal folk tales. Much as Christianity used local cultural forms to proselytise among indigenous groups, Nunukul uses Biblical narrative patterns to reconstruct aboriginal myths. The content of her narratives is native, the expression Christian, complete with Old and New books. Concepts of God, of Good and Evil have been used to explain aboriginal legends, but with significant departures in how the aboriginals relate to love, sin or divine sanction. There is no absolute divinity in Nunukul’s narratives, only a human understanding of life.

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