Working for the railways: Torres Strait Islander labour and mobility in the 1960s

Shino Konishi, L. Lui-Chivizhe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

In 1995 Ann Curthoys and Clive Moore published “Working for the White People”, a key essay on Indigenous labour historiography. They called for scholars to consider the history of Indigenous people's experience of work in terms of labour and not race relations. In this special issue devoted to celebrating Ann Curthoys' career, we take up the challenge by writing a history of the Torres Strait Islanders who moved to the mainland to work on the construction of the railways to service the burgeoning mining industry in the 1960s, a period commemorated in Islander communities as “railway time”. In our study of Indigenous labour and mobility we focus on the experiences of a particular Islander man, John Culear Kennell Snr, who worked as a labourer, team leader and recruiter of other Islanders in Queensland and Western Australia.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)445-456
JournalJournal of Australian Studies
Volume38
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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