Essay on Ethnic Views Of Indigenous People

1164 Words Aug 20th, 2015 5 Pages
Outsiders hold two primary views of indigenous people: that they are lazy and dependent on welfare to survive or that they are somehow a separate sect of humanity who lives in peaceful harmony with the natural world. Both views are problematic, the first for its blatant racism and the second for its failure to see indigenous people as contemporary people in a modern world. Both views align with the two basic types of racism, the first being inequality, prejudice, and discrimination, and the second being differentiation and exclusion (Laksiri, 41). In the short video Blackfella, Steven Oliver artistically responds to both of these views, suggesting that the only way to understand indigenous people in this modern world is to get to know indigenous people on a personal level because the representation of indigenous people in the media is misleading, insufficient, and inaccurate. In this paper I will examine the dominant opinions of indigenous people held by non-indigenous people showing that these views overlap with the two basic types of racism outlined by Laksiri, and how Steven Oliver challenges these opinions in his short video “Blackfella.” The first major stereotype—that indigenous people are lazy or in some other way responsible for their circumstances—is blatantly racist and promotes inequality, prejudice, and discrimination is the more malicious type and was the dominant form of racism in colonial Australia. Colonizers used racism strategically to justify…

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