Saturday, March 31, 2012

Black As Cole

IT IS ALL very well and good to give Gaia a break by turning off the lights for an hour, but there can be complications. In the dark and wishing to avoid an expensive trip to court, how would you recognise Indigenous artist and Mordy-Litijus elder Bindi Cole as an Aborigine?


Bindi is the lubra dusky maiden on the left. It is not known to which skin totem her companion belongs.

UPDATE: A reader has pointed out that the Macquarie Dictionary lists "lubra" as derogatory, and this came as quite the surprise. The word was used often by Australian explorers, including Sturt, who tells an amusing story of an old blackfella who "ventured to risk the lubras necks" but would not himself investigate the white man's camp for fear of his own. Ernest Giles hails lubras "young and pretty". More recently, some who drive the Stuart Highway may have stopped for a cuppa and a gander at Lubras Lookout, shown below.
It is very hard to keep track of which words are in favour and out of it. "Queer" was an insult in the Professor's youth; now it is paraded down Oxford with the bottom out of its cowboy chaps. Similarly "slut", which once meant a slovenly housekeeper, and then a slattern, has lately been pressed into service by loud and ungroomed women demanding the right to both provocative attire and immunity from the male gaze.

We must move with the times, so a substitution has been in the interests of reconciliation and racial amity. Let it not be said that Bunyips are ever less than sensitive and considerate.

31 comments:

  1. Going by her Irish red hair and cleavage I reckon her girlfriend is a member of the Paddy Melons skin group.

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  2. Very nice, its a pity you cropped the picture!!!!

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  3. Bunyip, I hereby volunteer to have my comment removed by a moderator.

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  4. I’m dismayed, Bunyip, by your proclivity to abuse using offensive terminology that went out with button-up boots.
    My father (Irish Catholic) was called a “Taig” when he was six years old, and horsewhipped by a cow cocky in Warwick for straying on to the cocky’s property. This was in the early twenties.
    I was called a “loser” and a “baby-killer” when I returned from Vietnam and had the effrontery to enrol full-time at U of Q at the height of the anti-Vietnam sentiment on a rehab fellowship. This was in the early seventies.
    These days, if anyone abused me or any of mine in the same way, they’d be in for a hiding.
    I’d put your use of the term “lubra” in the same bracket.
    Name calling is easy and doesn’t require a great deal of intellectual honesty. It cheapens you and your blog.
    Would you call Bindi Cole a “Lubra” to her face?

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    1. Go for it, Numbers! Here's your big chance to make a name for yourself in Australian legal history - the nobody who had a word outlawed by the thought police because of an offence to Aborigines imagined by white do-gooders who've never been within 2000 kilometres of Aboriginal land.

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    2. No, but I'd call her a fatuous idiot.

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    3. Address the issue Dude.

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    4. Cue violins.

      "I was called a “loser” and a “baby-killer” when I returned from Vietnam"

      Who by, Teach? That's your team throwing around those epithets. The worst thing right wing wingnuts will call you is a leftist.

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    5. Oh Dear, through my schooldays and that of my siblings we were known as Rathgar Rats because of being in a Children's Home. We grew up, I suggest you do the same.

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    6. Eric Jolliffe would turn in his grave at the prospect of Bindi being described as a "lubra".

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    7. "… if anyone abused me or any of mine in the same way, they’d be in for a hiding."
      And where would you be hiding?

      Cheers

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    8. Harden up numbers it is just another rent seeking fauxboriginal

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  5. Bunyip is using the term 'lubra' for comic effect, you idiot.

    You're right - name calling is easy.

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  6. Of course one can apply make-up to achieve a more authentic tinge,

    http://museumvictoria.com.au/pages/24849/bindi.jpg

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  7. Professor Bunyip,

    Disregard the ramblings of the papist protester above, I'm always amused by your cutting comments.

    I suggest you pick a copy of the great literary work by Sir Les Patterson "The Traveller's Tool". Quite possibly the greatest Australian book ever written.

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  8. Have you done anything else in your life which defines you? You seem to only have Viet Nam as your defining moment.

    I'm sure it's not the only one - get the chip of your shoulder, it's making you run around in circles.

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    1. Given Robert's 298 days with the RAR and the obvious nostalgia with which he remembers his Warrior interlude,I think,in future,he should be accorded the respect which he feels due and addressed not as Numbers or even as # but by his hard earned rank,Private.

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  9. Definition, an aboriginal woman, Numbers. Bindi Cole says she is an aboriginal woman. Where's the problem?

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  10. If Bindi Cole is Aboriginal then I'M SPARTICUS!!!!

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  11. David from TacomaApril 1, 2012 at 2:17 AM

    She looks Cherokee.

    http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20120304210324AAlQKGW

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  12. I fitted a genuine Rolls Royce washer to my Landrover and wanted to sell it as a Rolls Royce. However, I was told that was not on. My argument that my vehicle had rights and could self identify was not accepted. Some wordy bollocks about deceptive advertising was trotted out to block me.

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  13. "lubra" is in the Macquarie Dictionary; but it is followed by the descriptor (derogatory.)

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  14. You are Sparticus, if you choose to identify yourself as such.

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  15. taig is scots.

    if you really want to be irish offended how about i call you a bushy

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  16. I find this whole Aboriginal identity thing confusing. My last GF had paperwork from the Land Council (IIRC) that allowed her to apply for jobs that were identified as Aboriginal because of her background. However she was fairer than me with the most glorious alabaster skin and blonde hair (and Julia Roberts smile). She is smart, caring and dedicated and would no doubt do good work in such 'identified' positions, but as far as I recall, had never lived in an Aboriginal community, nor strong ties to it except for her family and here entire life had been in middle class suburbia.

    Around the time the paperwork arrived I questioned her on how she could identify this way. Basic answer was it gave her an advantage, and the rules said she could.

    I an an Anglo, identify as Australian but most of my ancestors are Scots and Irish with one a while back being English (all families have their embarrassments). Given a simple percentages view, my Englishness was equivalent to her Aboriginality, but I would never identify as English.

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    1. Don't be embarrassed, Brennan. It was the English who lifted the ungrateful Scots and Irish out if their tribal barbarity, and now employs them. Did you know that 2/3rds of people who can legitimately claim scots heritage are working for HMG in the BBC and the SAS? the other third live in Melbourne where they make absolute pustulent pricks of themselves in the trade union movement.

      I like my Scottish friends but most don't find their constant whining and grandstanding as amusing.

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  17. I hadn't heard the 'l' word since I was in primary school in the country. I think it was in reference to that part of Kirton Point which in those days was the town red light district.

    It's a useful word and should be resurrected. I shall do my part.

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  18. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.April 1, 2012 at 8:05 PM

    Lubra is a lovely, soft, gentle word that has early nineteenth century connotations of goodwill, although condescending: like 'piccaninny', another descriptor of 'the other'. If you seek a harsh and abusive word, then 'aboriginal gin' is available and quite awful, I think. The language of the racism of the past changes, and context is everything. I do not think the good Professor seeks to denigrate, only to parody. Well deserving of parody, too, this Morty Litjus tribe, all in the dark during Earth Hour.

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  19. Agree with the coment on 'taig' being Scottish, 'Tyke' seems more Australian. A more current Glaswegian term is contained in the 'Gers fans response to Celtic supporters' vile racial vituperations: 'I'd rather be a darkie than a tim, yes I would...'. Sung to the well known Simon and G tune. Follow ....JakartaJaap

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  20. Drynow Katherine NTApril 2, 2012 at 10:31 AM

    For those of us who work and live in the backblocks where 'no consequence' is an insult from our Canberra legislators, Lubra has never been a term of insult. How would an McQuarian academic cloistered in his papered office ever know?
    Neither is the word Gin. Neither word is used with separate inflection for different meanings such as the word Maluka is.(See Aeneus Gunn's We of the never never) The inflection that word is delivered with accords the subject of the description as either, "white man", "respected Boss man", or "blithering idiot white /boss man".

    One could check the cleavage between Beccy's big and next toe to see her real skin heritage.

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  21. Now if your name was Bolt you wouldn't have dared to write on such a subject, Prof,for fear of a Mordy shaft of doom shooting your way

    Aren't you lucky you aren't employed by the "evil hate press.,aka Murdoch's empire"!??

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