Babakiueria

Cath:

Halfway through this semester, this subject inspired me to go searching for a copy of an ABC satirical ‘pseudo-documentary’ titled ‘Babakiueria’ which originally went to air in 1986.    I finally tracked it down through the ABC shop online and can highly recommend it to anyone who can get a hold of a copy.  It shows a ‘reverse angle’ view of the discovery of Australia and its white inhabitants by Aboriginal people.  The film begins with a group of Aboriginal people arriving by boat on the Australian foreshores and attempting to communicate with a group of white people.   When the new arrivals manage to communicate an enquiry as to the name of this place, the white people respond with ‘Babakiueria’ (BBQ area).   The humour highlights the patronising approach taken by white people to Aboriginal Australians over the last two centuries (plus) and cleverly captures many of the issues surrounding racial inequality and racism.   I was particularly struck when reading the Eades’ article “Communicative strategies in Aboriginal English” of the way the film focuses on the problem of  ‘gratuitous concurrence’.    I had watched the film a couple of times since my recent purchase and the extraordinary importance of the effects of  ‘gratuitous concurrence’ completely escaped me until I read the Eades article.

Catch it if you can.  As a side-note the film was awarded the United Nations Media Peace Prize in 1987.

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