chapter  7
18 Pages

Lessons from down under

ByDavid Pilgrim

Kingsley Fairbridge believes genuinely that the skill shortages in the British colonies could be solved by transporting and training children, thereby enabling the latter to be happy Australian citizens and productive labour. In the case of the Aboriginal children, they were transported inside their own country by a colonial power, in part to ensure their 'assimilation' into a European culture. That deliberate attempt at assimilation has been called 'cultural genocide' by some critics to add to claims from historians of direct extermination. In Australia, that genocide had two phases: the assimilation of indigenous children into European-heritage families and institutions after the first wave of direct frontier violence, when the British simply killed aboriginal people. This history can be compared with the Eurocentric narrative that genocide based on race was at odds with civilised values. The Australian experience provides with evidence of the rich complexity of the conditions of emergence of Child Sexual Abuse in contemporary developed societies.