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Cleared Out: First contact in the Western Desert
Yuwali & Sue Davenport & Pete Johnson (authors)
Product Description

Winner, WA Premier's Book Awards, 2005
Winner, WA Premier's History Awards, 2005
Winner, Stanner Award, 2006

In 1964, a group of 20 Aboriginal women and children in the Western Desert made their first contact with European Australians — patrol officers from the Woomera Rocket Range, clearing an area into which rockets were to be fired. They had been pursued by the patrol officers for several weeks, running from this frightening new force in the desert.

Yuwali, 17 at the time, remembers every detail of the drama – first seeing these ‘devils’ and their ‘rocks that moved’, escaping the strange intruders. Her sharp recollections are complemented in a 3-part diary of the ‘chase’ by the colourful official reports of the patrol. These reflect a similar drama – arguments within Government about the treatment of desert inhabitants and public scepticism about the Government’s intent. Line-drawn maps and black & white illustrations complement the text.

Yuwali’s story also resonates in today’s debate about the future of many Indigenous desert communities. Cleared Out combines three oral histories, detailed archival research and a wealth of photographs and rare film footage from the patrol. Through one extraordinary episode, the multiple perspectives on the moment of contact are revealed.

2005, pb, 270x225mm, 304pp, b/w illus
ISBN 9780855754570

Winner of the 2005 Western Australian Premier's Book Award and the History Award and short listed for the 2005 Stanner Award

Cleared Out
(ASP web page)

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