chapter  3
30 Pages

Ocean connections: Local knowledge and regions of care

WithPaul Carter

Michael Davis cited a number of cases where 'local Aboriginal groups, whether clan based, language based or other community entities embed into various regional agreements and charters, statements regarding their local ecological knowledge and practices.' A more plausible ground might be the seabed: as part of the living seascape, its care matches society's self-care. There would need to be a new conception of the sea as an archipelago of shared interests: 'Maritime anthropology has demonstrated that how people understand property in ocean resources has to do with local systems of management and meaning, rather than with the nature of the sea as such.' Yolngu people understand that the vitality of places resides in their humid potential to interconnect, in their possessing a track that embodies their vitality, so that places come alive through the spirit that moves across and through them. The vulnerability of local knowledge in an urban context is well put by Ian Bentley.