Indigeneity behind the Scenes: Invasion and Kriolisation


  • Martin Préaud Postdoctoral fellow, SOGIP program, LAIOS-EHESS, France



This paper seeks to explore the relations between Indigenous and Creole modes of existence and political situations. It combines a theoretical and ethnographic approach to explore the Aboriginal concept of “law and culture” as it emerged in the Kimberley region of Australia. In retracing the historical conjuncture that gave rise to the emergence of this concept into an Aboriginal regional organisation, it highlights important similarities between the developing politics of indigeneity in Australia and the processes of creolisation. Different translations of “law and culture”, a concept expressed in Kriol, allow for a processual understanding of cultural and political change within Aboriginal societies and in their relation to the broader Australian society. Although Kriol is considered a linguistic phenomenon rather than a cultural or political one in the Australian context, it points to specific historical and social processes that are crucial to understanding the conditions in which Indigenous subjects are able to enunciate and articulate their position. By situating creolisation in the broader context of settler colonialism, I argue that it is a necessary counterpart of indigeneity, but one that needs be silenced and made invisible




How to Cite

Préaud, M. (2015). Indigeneity behind the Scenes: Invasion and Kriolisation. ETropic: Electronic Journal of Studies in the Tropics, 14(2).