Aileen Walsh: Another scholarship, another conference

RDHP PhD student Aileen Marwung Walsh has received a full scholarship for the Professional Certificate in Indigenous Research at the University of Melbourne. The residential commences in July 2019 and Aileen looks forward to meeting fellow Indigenous postgraduates and discussing the problems that abound in Indigenous research contexts.

Aileen was also recently accepted to deliver a paper at the Encounters & Exchanges conference in New Zealand, with accommodation bursaries. This will be another opportunity for Aileen to meet other Indigenous people working within the interface of Indigenous and European sciences. Below is her abstract.

An Indigenous Science of Virtues: The role of virtues language for the healthy maintenance of country has not before been considered. Research on ‘caring for country’ abounds, but the practical and necessary application of virtues is missing. I argue, it is virtues towards country that have enabled Aboriginal cultures to maintain and sustain a healthy relationship with country and thus nurture a country that flourished for over 50, 000 years, until colonisation. Using ethnographic and descriptive materials of Aboriginal people from Daisy Bates and other colonisers, my research links the role of virtues with the work of Bill Gammage’s The Biggest Estate on Earth and Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu. The study of virtues is generally relegated to the disciplines of philosophy and religion, yet, as the discipline of psychology has discovered, virtues are necessary for human physical and emotional well-being. Virtues are the means by which humans stay safe. Europeans stopped applying virtues to country a long time ago and consequently, the uglier emotions of greed and fear have flourished leading to the ruination of the planet. A consideration of virtues language in relation to country needs to be considered in a systematic, perhaps scientific way because virtues need to be balanced. It is the balance of virtues between humans and country and between humans individually and culturally.

In other news, Growing up Aboriginal in Australia continues to sell nationwide. The book contains childhood stories of family, country and belong. Aileen is one of the contributors and you can purchase the book at Black Ink. Books or Amazon (#1 Best Seller in Essays).

Aileen’s chapter answers the question of what is it like to grow up Aboriginal in Australia? The anthology, compiled by award-winning author Anita Heiss, showcases many diverse voices, experiences and stories in order to answer that question. This ground breaking collection will enlighten, inspire and educate about the lives of Aboriginal people in Australia today.

Contributors include: Tony Birch, Deborah Cheetham, Adam Goodes, Terri Janke, Patrick Johnson, Ambelin Kwaymullina, Jack Latimore, Celeste Liddle, Amy McQuire, Kerry Reed-Gilbert, Miranda Tapsell, Jared Thomas, Aileen Walsh, Alexis West, Tara June Winch, and many, many more.