Keating Speech: The Redfern Address

Keating Speech: The Redfern Address
WARNING: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are advised that the following program may contain images and/or audio of deceased persons
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This clip is in three parts:

Part 1: Keating answers this rhetorical question by outlining the abuses that have occurred since the time of colonisation to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples of Australia. He cites a failure of imagination on the part of settler colonial society to be able to imagine these things being 'done to us’. However, he asserts that guilt is not a productive emotion, that ‘what we need to do is to open our hearts … All of us’.

Part 2: In this section of his speech, Keating documents the remarkable contributions of the Indigenous people of Australia in history, sport, the arts, the armed services, in all areas of Australian life.

Part 3: This clip includes the ending of the speech. This is the section where Keating continues with his message of hope for significant change in Australian society. He outlines some of the changes that he can see already, such as a growing appreciation of the diversity and depth of cultures in Indigenous Australia, of the richness of our national life and identity with the participation of Indigenous people, their music, art and dance.

The genius and resilience of people who have survived many thousands of years, including cataclysmic changes, for example, helps us to learn to live with our environment. He references, importantly, ‘the wisdom contained in their epic story’ and how much colonial settlers have lost through living apart.

Summary by Vicki Grieves