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Tiwi Story Turning history downside up


Tiwi Story Turning history downside up

  • ISBN 13:


  • ISBN 10:


  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 09/01/2023
  • Publisher: NewSouth

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Tiwi people have plenty to be proud of. This little tropical island community has more than its fair share of surprising stories that turn ideas of Australian history upside down. The Tiwi claim the honour of having defeated a global superpower. When the world’ s most powerful navy attempted to settle and invade the Tiwi Islands in 1824, Tiwi guerrilla warriors fought the British and won. The Tiwi remember the fight and oral histories reveal their tactical brilliance. Later, in 1911, Catholic priest Francis Xavier Gsell styled himself as the ‘ Bishop with 150 wives’ . Gsell said he ‘ purchased’ Tiwi women and ‘ freed’ them from traditional Tiwi marriage, and Tiwi girls grew up into devoted Catholics. But Tiwi women had more power in their marriage negotiations than the missionaries realised. They worked out how to be both Tiwi and Catholic. And it was the missionaries who came around to Tiwi thinking, not the other way around.

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