Juliet O'Conor


During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, non-Indigenous authors retold Indigenous stories, presenting them as myths or fairy tales. In 1964 the first Indigenous author and artist to do so produced a collection of traditional stories reflective of Indigenous knowledge, teaching, and learning practices. Political advances achieved by Indigenous people during the twentieth century continue to address the imbalance heavily weighted to depictions of Indigenous cultures in children’s books by non-Indigenous producers. I contrast the colonial retelling of Australian Legendary Tales by Kate Langloh Parker with The Legends of Moonie Jarl by Butchulla author and artist Wilf Reeves and Olga Miller to show how transformative an active Indigenous voice is for the Australian literary landscape.