Environment and Nature: Australian Aboriginal People
Australian Aboriginal people's traditional relationship to their land from a philosophical, economic, and spiritual viewpoint was quite different from that of the Europeans who arrived toward the end of the eighteenth century. Aboriginal environmental philosophy was related to their being observers, knowers, and users, rather than managers and interferers. This approach was the essence of their genius, enabling them to survive successfully for 40,000 years – perhaps much longer. Their philosophy could be described as nonmaterialistic ecocentrism, expressed through totemism, Dreaming, and the law, contrasting markedly with European materialistic anthropocentrism.
During the millennia before European occupation the continent had undergone big climatic changes followed by enormous environmental ones. Aboriginal people experienced the gradual extinction of the megafauna, commencing from the earlier part of their occupation, and, between 15,000 and 6,000 years ago, the decrease in the size...
- Hallam, Sylvia J. Fire and Hearth: A Study of Aboriginal Usage and European Usurpation in South‐Western Australia. Canberra: Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies, 1975.Google Scholar
- Hetzel, B. S. and H. J. Frith, ed. The Nutrition of Aborigines in Relation to the Ecosystem of Central Australia. Melbourne: CSIRO, 1978.Google Scholar
- Mulvaney, D. J. and J. Golson, ed. Aboriginal Man and Environment in Australia. Canberra: Australian National University Press, 1971.Google Scholar
- Mulvaney, D. J. and J. Peter White, ed. Australians to 1788. Broadway, NSW: Fairfax, Syme & Weldon Associates, 1987.Google Scholar
- Rose, F. G. G. The Traditional Mode of Production of the Australian Aboriginals. Sydney: Angus & Robertson, 1987.Google Scholar
- Rowland, M. J. Aborigines and Environment in Holocene Australia: Changing Paradigms. Australian Aboriginal Studies 2 (1983): 62–76.Google Scholar
- Strehlow, T. G. H. Personal Monototemism in a Polytotemic Community. Festschrift für AD. E. Jensen. Ed. Eike Haberland, Meinhard Schuster, and Helmut Straube. München: Klaus Renner Verlag, 1964.Google Scholar
- Tunbridge, Dorothy. Flinder Ranges Dreaming. Canberra: Aboriginal Studies Press, 1988.Google Scholar
- ‐‐‐. The Story of the Flinder Ranges Mammals. Sydney: Kangaroo Press, 1991.Google Scholar
- Waddy, J. A. Classification of Plants & Animals from a Groote Eylandt Aboriginal Point of View. Vol. 1. Australian National University North Australian Research Unit Monograph. North Ryde: Macquarie University, 1988.Google Scholar
- Williams, Nancy M. and Eugene S. Hunn, ed. Resource Managers: North American and Australian Hunter Gatherers. Boulder, Colorado: Westview Press for the American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1982.Google Scholar
- Young, Elspeth, Caring for the Country: Aborigines and Land Management. Canberra: Australian National Parks & Wildlife Service, 1991.Google Scholar