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Looking into shadows: Musquito and Black Jack, and a death mask made of country


Parry Duncan, N, Looking into shadows: Musquito and Black Jack, and a death mask made of country, Proceedings of the 2021 Australian Historical Association Conference, 01 December 2021, University of New South Wales, pp. 1 piece- abstract. (2021) [Conference Extract]

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There have been dramatic changes in scholarship in Aboriginal history since I wrote a short biography of the life of the Gai-mariagal warrior Musquito for the Australian Dictionary of Biography in 2003. His story, of exile from the Colony of Sydney to Norfolk Island in 1805 then to Van Diemen's Land in 1814, and his 1825 execution, remains a foundational narrative of Australian history, but I no longer think a traditional biography, focusing on the story of an individual, conveys the complexity of this history.

This paper will talk about encountering the death mask of one of Musquito's companions, a palawa warrior known as Black Jack, and what that taught me about the enactment of particular forms of colonial violence. It presents a challenge to the work of recent biographers who have written about palawa people and Musquito.

Item Details

Item Type:Conference Extract
Keywords:Australian history; Aboriginal history; biography
Research Division:History, Heritage and Archaeology
Research Group:Historical studies
Research Field:Biography
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in history, heritage and archaeology
UTAS Author:Parry Duncan, N (Dr Naomi Parry Duncan)
ID Code:152932
Year Published:2021
Deposited By:English
Deposited On:2022-08-26
Last Modified:2022-09-12

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