Institute of Criminology, Sydney

Indigenous Human Rights


"The language and concept of rights is one that Indigenous people turn to more and more. We all hold these rights by virtue of being human even if we have a different cultural construct of what those rights might mean in practice. This book makes a valuable contribution to those debates by providing a platform for the injection of perspectives from Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians, as well as a number of overseas Indigenous lawyers and academics." - Professor Larissa Behrendt, Director, Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning, Professor of Law and Indigenous Studies, University of Technology Sydney

Indigenous Human Rights is an edited selection of proceedings of the Australian Indigenous Human Rights Conference, organised by members of Southern Cross University in February 2000. The collection covers a range of issues relating to Indigenous human rights including: racial discrimination and 'special measures'; removal of children; law and order; access to the United Nations; and prospects for the use of international law. One of the most important aspects of the book is the range of Indigenous and non-Indigenous contributors from Australia, the Pacific, north America, and Europe.


The book makes a valuable contribution to the discourse on Australian indigenous human rights from an international perspective. - Law Institute Journal (Vic), September 2003

Table of Contents

Warwick Fisher & Sam Garkawe

Larissa Behrendt

Part 1: Indigenous Human Rights in Australia
The legitimacy of special measures
William Jonas and Margaret Donaldson

One Indigenous perspective on human rights
Irene Watson

Cultural rights, human rights and the contemporary removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their families
Chris Cunneen and Terry Libesman

"Dry 'em out" or "lock 'em up": contrasting approaches to law and order in Tennant Creek
Pamela Ditton

Asserting Indigenous cultural and intellectual property rights
Terri Janke

Part 2: International Developments in Indigenous Human Rights
The influence of Indigenous peoples on the development of international law
S. James Anaya

Locating human rights in the South Pacific: a Korero about human rights
Nin Tomas

The Indian Child Welfare Act, love has little to do with it
Mary Jo B. Hunter

Indigenous rights to self-government and self-determination: an Inuit Arctic perspective
Joern Berglund Nielsen

Part 3: Realising Human Rights
Realising human rights: utilising UN mechanisms
Elizabeth Evatt

Getting government to listen
Bill Barker

The real crime of the State and Indigenous people's human rights
Paul Omojo Omaji

Unfinished business - national responsibilities and local actions
Peter Yu

Of interest...