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This volume of original essays brings together, for the first time, histories of the making and of the makers of most of the major Indigenous Australian museum collections. These collections are a principal source of information on how Aboriginal people lived in the past. Knowing the context in which any collection was created-the intellectual frameworks within which the collectors were working, their collecting practices, what they failed to collect, and what Aboriginal people withheld - is vital to understanding how any collection relates to the Aboriginal society from which it was derived. Once made, collections have had mixed fates: some have become the jewel of a museum's holdings, while others have been divided and dispersed across the world, or retained but neglected. The essays in this volume raise issues about representation, institutional policies, the periodisation of collecting, intellectual history, material culture studies, Aboriginal culture and the idea of a 'collection'.
Melbourne University Press
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