New Directions in Australian History

Kate Darian-Smith, Penelope Edmonds

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial


This issue of Australian Historical Studies leads with a landmark article by Shurlee Swain entitled ‘Enshrined in Law: Legislative Justifications for the Removal of Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Children in Colonial and Post-Colonial Australia’. Australian historiography concerned with the state removal of children from their families has generally separated the legislation directed at Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians, as well as the subsequent experiences of both groups of children in institutionalised care. Swain’s important survey shows the commonalities as well as differences in the arguments used to justify Indigenous and non-Indigenous child removal from the nineteenth to the early twentieth
centuries. It reveals the complex interactions in debates around such legislation, how these were shaped by questions of race and whiteness, and how the policies of child removal were important to the building of the settler colonial nation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)189-190
Number of pages2
JournalAustralian Historical Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 3 May 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Australian history
  • colonial history
  • Aboriginal people


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