Rabbit Proof Fence – The Stolen Generation

In our English class today we saw the movie Rabbit Proof Fence. It tells the true story of a girl named Molly Kelly and her battle for freedom. During the time period 1905-1970’s, Australian Aboriginal children were taken from their families by the Australian Federal and State government agencies and church missions. At least 35 000 children were removed from their parents and almost all of them never saw them again. Molly and her sister, along with one other girl, gets capture by white men to be put into a state-run concentration camp. Despite the odds they walked all the way back to their home. The picture below is the real Molly Kelly.Molly Kelly IRL

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.Your reflections on the topic, what did you know before you saw the movie and read the background, and what did you learn today?

I was not aware of all the mistreatment and racism against the Aboriginal peoples in Australia. I did know they were treated poorly, but not on a such high level as protrayed in the film. I think the movie is a real eyeopener to what the Aboriginal peoples in Austraila, among other indeginous peoples in the world, are exposed to. It really makes us think about how good our lives are here in Norway, and that we take everything for granted.

I learned a great deal from the movie; about the concentration camps that they built in order to raise the Aboriginal children, the fact that over 35 000 children were taken during the timeperiod of 1905-1970, and that the order was actually created by the Australian government. I think that the speech that the Prime Minister of Australia held was a symbol of strenght and Unity. Kevin Rudd openly says sorry on behalf of the Australian government, and he says sorry to The Stolen Generation.
You can watch the video here:

I think it is really strong of him to hold this speech as the Australian government has realized how worng and badly they have treated the Aboriginal peoples in Australia.

4. Do you really think the girls could have walked all that way?

The girls walked a remarkable distance of 1500 miles, which calculates into 2414 kilometers! Thats further then walking across Norway from top to bottom. Of course I believe they made it, mainly because it’s a true story, but it’s still quite amazing how the girls managed to survive in the Australian wilderness for over nine weeks. Imagine surviving in the harsh, vast landscape of Australia, at the same time as being hunted. What those girls went through is difficult to digest. This may also tell some people how big Australia really is.Harsh Australian wilderness

The girls were quite clever. They used several different techniques to cover their tracks as they made their way back to their home. I think it is facinating to see how creative a person can be if it is truly required.

6.Could you design a policy to educate half-caste children living with Aboriginal mothers so that they could advance in the Australian economy and yet respect their Aboriginal heritage? Source: Teach with movies

If I were to design a policy to educate half-caste children in Australia I would simply put up more schools. I would put up a lot of them so that the schools would be more local and easy to reach. Also I would give each student that live a long away from their nearest school a bik. Thereby it would be an easy travel for everyone. I would hire Aboriginal people as teachers, so the students would feel more “home”. Also this woud make it easier for teacher and student comunication. There they would be taught about their own culture and the outside world. Despite of this idea I think that Aboriginal peoples should be allowed to live as they wish, and their culture should be highly respected. Going to school should not be an obligation, but an option.

Aboriginal School
IEO Edward Rontji gives a talk to school children at Hermannsburg/Ntalia School schooling leadership

The school would have sepperate classes for different age groups. Therefore people of all ages could attend the school. As an example:

Agegroups:
Years 5-7
Years 7-10
Years 10-14
Years 15-80(and beyond)

The students would feel better being with students their own age. Excecptions could be made to put friends and familiy in the same classes.

I think that a school system would be the most effective way to educate half-caste children (and all aboriginal children if they want to) since it would be local, integrated and free.

Sources:
Rabbit Proof Fence

Aboriginal peoples in Australia

Australia

Thanks for reading 🙂

 

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