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Academic Curriculum

Library News:  A Book Review from our Head of Learning Support

From Head of Library Services, William Roberts

To promote reading to your sons we have a ‘Reading Wall’ in the library. On this wall we display photos and book reviews of what our staff are reading. Books displayed and chosen are books that would appeal and at times stretch teenage boys’ usual reading choices. It is a great way as well, for boys, to get to know the wider teaching staff via learning a little bit more about the staff member displayed.  Often conversations are initiated from these displays. Our latest review is from Mr David Parnell, Head of Learning Support.  We thank David for sharing this review and for promoting reading through the College via the library ‘Reading Wall’. As well, ask your sons to look out for my review, on display as well.  I have reviewed the science fiction classic, A Wrinkle in Time.


Jandamarra and the Bunuba Resistance by Banjo Woorunmurra and Howard Pedersen

From Head of Learning Support, David Parnell

Jandamarra and the Bunuba Resistance is a true story of a remarkable Bunuba Aboriginal man’s fights to defend his people’s sacred land. While assisting the local police, to protect himself from unlawful incarceration, he becomes a proficient marksman. Finally, when forced to turn against his own family, who are chained to a tree and perishing in the sun, he returns to his community. Jandamarra initially struggles to be accepted,  due to past disruptions in his ceremonial rituals essential for him to grow into a Bununba man; Jandamarra is caught between two cultures.  Nevertheless, Jandamarra’s unrivalled skill in leading his people in protecting their land against settlers enables him to stall the loss of cultural land, until the inevitable happens.

The lies and corruption practised by Western Australian Police, was scrutinised by the British Government; Nonetheless, murders and incarceration, including imprisonment on Rottnest Island, of Aboriginal people in the Kimberley were numbered in the hundreds. Banjo Woorunmurra and Howard Pedersen have scripted a history based on prolonged and extensive research of events, often deliberately inaccurately reported for selfish financial gain and power, which are indescribably brutal. Struggling to justify how these actions could have gone on for so long, former Prime Minister of Australia, Paul Keating states, “It was our ignorance and our prejudice, and our failure to imagine these things being done to us.” The honest history was kept from the public for so many years.  Few authorities challenged dishonest reports; actions of the Western Australian Government, described in the Catholic Record (1895), “The operation of the police against the natives will remain forever as an indelible blot on the present administration.”

Jandamarra and the Bunuba Resistance is a thrilling readable story, punctuated with exerts from journals, transcripts of yarns and images, making it a must read.