Publication Details

Slater, L. 2008, ''Aurukun, we're happy, strong people': Aurukun kids projecting life into bad headlines', Borderlands E-Journal: new spaces in the humanities, vol. 7, no. 2, pp. 1-14.


Public discourse about remote Aboriginal communities tells a story of crisis. The Northern Territory Intervention and other events that have taken place in Aboriginal communities are portrayed as if the Aboriginal child is a docile, cowering, vulnerable body, which needs to be protected by the state. This story has become a narrative of dysfunction, which not only shapes how broader Australia engages with Indigenous life worlds, but also informs the environment in which Aboriginal people, and notably children, live. This essay explores a multimedia program held at Aurukun School, West Cape York, in which students produced their own films, which respond to the now monolithic representations of the Aboriginal child as a vulnerable or volatile body. The films demonstrate that these Aboriginal kids from Aurukun also experience themselves as exuberant bodies.

Link to publisher version (URL)

Borderlands E-Journal