Coloureds and Catholics
: a colonial subject's narrative of the factors and processes that led to the colonisation and conversion of coloureds at Garden Point Mission, 1941-1967

  • Sue Jean Stanton

    Student thesis: Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) - CDU


    The main focus of this thesis is on the force that was colonialism and Christianity that impacted on, and fractured the lives of Aboriginal people under weighty governmental policy dictums, segregation, assimilation and institutionalism. This thesis offers no positive reviews of those factors and processes that not only created false identities with the construction of the term “Aboriginal”, but ensured the Indigenous People of Australia would remain one of the most conquered peoples in Western history.

    The research carried out is a study of the transformation of two particular Aboriginal groups in a society that was partly formed due to the influences of a foreign religion, namely the Catholic faith. The relationship of government policy and administration to the ambitions of the missionising project is explored in order to ascertain the success of the various goals, and the ultimate success of the conversion of the particular combined Aboriginal community of ‘Coloured’ and Tiwi. The resultant conclusions are founded on a personally intense, perhaps partly obsessed, study of the philosophies and attitudes involved in the processes of the civilising mission based on contemporary western ideas about civilisation, “progress” and social evolution. The convergence and divergence of the goals of governments, earlier colonial, post-Federation and mission societies raise historical questions which demand answers for Aboriginal Australians, but sadly, will not be answered any time soon.
    Date of Award2007
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorDavid Carment (Supervisor)

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