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Living Black

Culture binds people together, its all about identity.

"My mother left Point Pearce when I was 17, so I spent a lot of years coming and going to funerals. I couldn't buy flowers any more because I didn't have enough money. I plaited red, black and yellow in a headband and wore it to the funeral and put that in the grave. That's how the plaited headband came. I did it first to take the place of the flowers. It just felt right to do it, and then it became everywhere, like taking the ochre home to the funerals. They all freaked out, they were Christians and thought the devil was coming. They were all scared of it. Now of course they're not, so we've reclaimed the right to bury our dead in a way that's more appropriate to us."
Georgina Williams

"It was only when my mother died that one of the aunties said about us being Aboriginal. My sister did a lot of research and we're still connecting up now. It wasn't a surprise. My mother-in-law would say 'you're Aboriginal', and I'd say 'no I'm not'. Everyone else seems to have known. In those days the whiter you were the more they took you away to integrate you. So our parents tried to make us seem so white we were not Aboriginal, if we were light Aboriginals they took us away."
Josephine Judge-Rigney

"When I was young, being Kaurna just didn't come up, it didn't matter. It matters more today where the individual came from and where they belong.  Our grandmother wanted our culture embedded in us, she told us many of her dreamtime stories and about growing up at Point McLeay (Raukkan). One day Nana took us to Point McLeay and a lot of the kids who lived there started running for the lake. We got prickles in our feet and were shamed because we had to sit on the path pulling out the three corner jacks."
Margaret and Kathy Brodie

"With Nunga families you just have to laugh; even at funerals we laugh. Mum taught us really well - laugh, as long as the bills are paid you can always go to your family for food."
Josephine Judge-Rigney

“I don’t think we ever get out of our culture, especially when we’re all together.”
Josie Agius