Interview on My Sociological Practice

I’ve been interviewed for the Lady Science podcast. I talk about what sociology is, my career as an applied sociologist, and how Indigenous and other minority sociologists continue to challenge Western and colonial methods and ideas in sociology and in social policy.

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Decolonising Sociology

Much like the challenges facing educators looking to transform education in a way that is more meaningful to Indigenous students, Australian sociology has many issues of colonialism to address. Indigenous sociologist Associate Professor Kathleen Butler belongs to the Bundjalung and Worimi peoples of coastal New South Wales. She finds that our discipline presents several problems in the way we teach, research and discuss Indigenous experiences.  First, many of our key texts are written from a particular White Western perspective. For example, we continue to teach Durkheim who used Indigenous Australians as a case study of a “primitive” culture. Even when using the work of Marx … Continue reading Decolonising Sociology

Indigenous Australians, Justice & Language Translation

Common law does not require people are given access to an interpreter but legal cases show that use of interpreters does not always lead to an accurate and fair presentation of evidence in court. This is especially problematic for Indigenous Australians who speak diverse languages that don’t necessarily translate well through the mouths of a poorly trained interpreter.

Indigenous Australian Justice.
Photo: Zuleyka Zevallos. Street art: Adnate.

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Transgender Indigenous Australians

The term “Brother Boy” describes an Indigenous transgender man and “Sister Girl” describes transgender women. In this short interview with The Wire (below), brother boy Kai Clancey talks about his social identity being a “double edged sword.” He experiences racism within the transgender community as well as confusion and exclusion from some members of his Indigenous community. Clancey talks about his experience in terms of postcolonialism. Transphobia and homophobia are part of European settler culture, which also launched a campaign of genocide against the First Australians. Clancey says he is in the process of resisting colonial mindset, revising his cultural … Continue reading Transgender Indigenous Australians

Displacement of Indigenous Australians

The Australian Government is getting ready to displace Indigenous Australians living in over 150 remote communities in Western Australia, in a bid to save money. Rather than fixing existing social services, Indigenous Australians will be forced to move from their homes. This poorly conceived policy is nothing short of colonial violence, by dispossessing our traditional land owners from their homes. The Government’s unwillingness to deliver basic services, such as health, shows their commitment to treating Indigenous Australians like second-class citizens. As I reported elsewhere, last year the Government did nothing for months as a remote Indigenous community lived without clean … Continue reading Displacement of Indigenous Australians

Protesters march through Sydney. Two people hold a large Aboriginal flag as they walk

Race and Identity

This is a summary of my recent social media writing about race and identity in Australia and the USA. This included my live tweets during the Sydney hostage siege as well as the Ferguson and the #BlackLivesMatter anti-police violence protests following the death of Eric Garner.

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