On the Promotion of Positive Peace for Indigenous Australians: Ideas from Across the Tasman

Part of the Peace Psychology Book Series book series (PPBS)


This chapter critically examines the status of positive and negative peace relations between indigenous minorities and non-indigenous majorities in both Australia and New Zealand. The analysis identifies catalysts and barriers to peace in both locations focusing on the similar psychological mechanisms underlying these intergroup relations. For example, beliefs of relative deprivation held by non-Indigenous peoples can be seen to underlie resistance to the apology to Indigenous Australians, as well as support for a reduction in Māori-specific government policy in New Zealand. Claims that New Zealand’s approach to the relationship with the Māori people should serve as a model for other countries to follow are tempered in this analysis by the identification of areas in which New Zealand still has lengths to go to achieve positive peace. Similarly, significant contextual differences between Australia and New Zealand prevent a simplistic transplantation of New Zealand’s ‘solutions’ to issues faced by Australian Indigenous peoples. We do, however, see the future of positive peace in both countries as dependent on three key principles: ripeness for change in non-indigenous communities, indigenous voice and activism and development of a shared vision between indigenous and non-indigenous people.


Indigenous People Aboriginal People Torres Strait Islander Relative Deprivation Indigenous Group 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Formerly of The School of LawLa Trobe UniversityMelbourneAustralia
  2. 2.School of PsychologyThe University of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia

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