Isolation, Insularity and Change in Island Populations - an Interdisciplinary Study of Aboriginal Cultural Patterns in the Gulf of Carpentaria (2006–2010)

Abstract:
Our interdisciplinary study tests pivotal hypotheses concerning insularity, isolation and cultural change in Aboriginal Australia. It examines two now-divergent island populations residing in similar physical environments and with shared ancestral language and a common mainland source group. The project examines how these groups contended with cultural change over a 10,000-year time scale, sometimes acculturating exogenous traits whilst at others exploiting insularity and isolation to promote distinctiveness through local invention in such a way that two different cultures emerged. The findings will contribute to international debates on island colonisation and how cultural reproduction continues in the face of globalising influences.
Grant type:
ARC Discovery Projects
Researchers:
  • Professor
    School of Architecture
    Faculty of Engineering, Architecture and Information Technology
    Professor
    Institute for Social Science Research
    Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Emeritus Professor
    School of Social Science
    Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Emeritus Professor
    School of Social Science
    Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Funded by:
Australian Research Council