Published: July 2019
Through the struggles of Indigenous Australians for recognition
and self-determination it has become common sense to
understand Australia as made up of both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people and things. But in what ways is the Indigenous/non-Indigenous distinction being used and understood? In The Difference Identity Makes, thirteen Indigenous and non-Indigenous
academics examine how this distinction structures the work of
cultural production and how Indigenous producers and their works
are recognised and valued.
The editors introduce this innovative collection of essays with a path-finding argument that `Indigenous cultural capital' now
challenges all Australians to re-position themselves within a
revised scale of values. Each chapter looks at one of five fields of Australian cultural production: sport, television, heritage,
visual arts and music, revealing that in each the Indigenous/non-Indigenous distinction has effects that are specific.
This brings new depth and richness to our understanding of what
`Indigeneity' can mean in contemporary Australia. In demonstrating
the variety of ways that 'the Indigenous' is made visible and valued
the essays provide a powerful alternative to the `deficit' theme that
has continued to haunt the representation of Indigeneity.