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Writing Belonging at the Millennium

Notes from the Field on Settler-Colonial Place

Writing Belonging at the Millennium brings together two pressing and interrelated matters: the global environmental impacts of post-industrial economies and the politics of place in settler-colonial societies. It focuses on Australia at the millennium, when the legacies of colonization intersected with intensifying environmental challenges in a climate of anxiety surrounding settler-colonial belonging. The question of what “belonging” means is central to the discussion of the unfolding politics of place in Australia and beyond.

In this book, Emily Potter negotiates the meaning of belonging in a settler-colonial field and considers the role of literary texts in feeding and contesting these legacies and anxieties. Its intention is to interrogate the assumption that non-indigenous Australians’ increasingly unsustainable environmental practices represent a failure on their part to adequately belong in the country. Writing Belonging at the Millennium explores the idea of unsettled non-indigenous belonging as context for the emergence of potentially decolonized relations with place in a time of heightened global environmental concern.

190 pages | 6 3/4 x 9 3/4

Economics and Business: Economics--General Theory and Principles

History: Environmental History

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"To read Potter's book is—if you have not already—to begin recognising an understanding of the way literary texts by non-Indigenous writers absorb, respond to, repeat and/or critically illuminate social discourses that co-construct historical moments. . . . The challenge is: how, during a time of intensifying ecological disaster, are we to avoid reactivating narratives that re-install and re-naturalise non-Indigenous presence while reaffirming Indigenous dispossession? Writing Belonging at the Millennium will not answer this question for you. But it will provide you with a map of some of what’s been done, and to what effect. I urge you to read this book. It's clear. It's urgent. Potter's work is forensic and generous. There are no arrogant or generalist pronouncements here, no striding across the colonial stage."

Hayley Singer | Swamphen: a Journal of Cultural Ecology

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