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Love against the Law -

Love against the Law

The autobiographies of Tex and Nelly Camfoo

Gillian Cowlishaw

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During his life, Tex Camfoo has been classified as Aboriginal, half-caste and European. As a half-caste he could not legally associate with or marry an Aboriginal woman. As an Aboriginal, he was no read more

During his life, Tex Camfoo has been classified as Aboriginal, half-caste and European. As a half-caste he could not legally associate with or marry an Aboriginal woman. As an Aboriginal, he was not allowed to visit the pub with his European work mates.

Nelly Camfoo was always considered Aboriginal. From childhood she has taken part in ceremonial life. She finds white people both frustrating and foolish - 'they can't understand because they can't listen'.

The stories of Tex and Nelly Camfoo intermingle to highlight the ambiguous social position of Aboriginals living in the Northern Territory during the last century. They provide insight into race relations, the contradictory attitudes of missionaries and police, they reflect morality and religion as well as recent political developments.

Production Details
  • Paperback
  • 240mm x 170mm x 10mm
  • 120pp
  • Released January 2000
  • ISBN 9780855753481
Excerpt
Contents
About The Author

Gillian Cowlishaw is an Honorary Professor at the University of Sydney. Her first fieldwork was with Rembarrnga people in Arnhem Land. Cowlishaw’s experience of the racialised world of the Northern Territory sparked a life-long interested in race relations, especially the ongoing effects of European colonisation on the everyday social worlds of Aboriginal people.

Using close-grained ethnographic research, Cowlishaw explored how the state and the nation impacted over time on varied Aboriginal communities which often tried to escape encapsulation in the state’s projects and in the moral regimes of the nation. Her publications include Race Matters: Indigenous Australians and 'our' society (1997, co-author Barry Morris); Rednecks, Eggheads and Blackfellas: racial power and intimacy in north Australia (1999) and Love Against the Law: the autobiographies of Tex and Nelly Camfoo (2000).

She conducted further fieldwork with Rembarrnga communities and initiated research in rural NSW, which informed Black, White or Brindle: Race in Rural Australia (1988) and Blackfellas, Whitefellas and the hidden injuries of race (2004). Later field work in western Sydney led to The City’s Outback (2008). She has an ongoing interest in the development of Australia focussed anthropology, with essays published in The Australian Journal of Anthropology TAJA.

About The Cover

Photographs by Dodd collection Museum and Art gallery of the Northern Territory, Gillian Cowlishaw, Charles Chauvel, Corneila Veroorn, Hal Wooten

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