About the book

Not 'dying out' as predicted, Aboriginal numbers recovered and—along with Torres Strait Islanders—they became an articulate presence, aggrieved at colonial authority's interventions into family life and continuing dispossession. This book narrates their recovery—not only in numbers but in cultural confidence and critical self-awareness. Pointing to Indigenous leaders, it also reassesses the contribution of government and mission 'protection' policies and the revised definitions of 'Aboriginal'. Rowse explains why Australia has conceded a large Indigenous Land and Sea Estate, and argues that the crisis in 'self-determination' has been fuelled by Indigenous critique of the selves that they have become.

Book cover - Indigenous and other Australians since 1901.
Published by: 
NewSouth Publishing

About the author


Tim Rowse has been writing on Australian Indigenous affairs since the early 1980s and is one Australia's most significant scholars of Indigenous Studies. He worked for many years at the Menzies School for Health Research in Alice Springs. He has also taught on this subject at the ANU, Western Sydney University and Harvard. Widely published, Tim's last book is Rethinking Social Justice: from 'peoples to 'populations' (2012).

Author - Indigenous and other Australians since 1901.

Judges’ comments

This is an ambitious comprehensive book that deals with the complexity of European policies and attitudes toward Aboriginal people, from the rural north and urban southern Australia. It reassesses the contribution of government and mission 'protection' policies and explores the processes which resulted in revised definitions of 'Aboriginal'. This is a solid and fresh work focussing on the 20th century, and challenges long held views as it revisits and reanalyses previous research. In this important book Rowse takes a deep look into Australian history, to understand the complexities of the interactions between Aboriginal people, the government and missionaries. He argues for the complexity of Indigenous culture, which still eludes the understandings of Europeans. This is a brave, challenging and revealing book.