Walking the Thylacine

Records of Indigenous Companion Animals in Australian Narrative and Photographic History

In: Society & Animals
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  • 1 Ecosystem Management, School of Environmental and Rural Science, University of New England
  • 2 School of Historical and Philosophical Studies and Department of Resource Management & Geography, University of Melbourne

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This report examines the history and significance of indigenous companion animals within traditional Aboriginal society and in early Euro-Australian settlements. Working from historical photographic and anthropological records, the project constructs a visual and written record of these often-transient human-animal relationships, including cockatoos who spoke in Aboriginal language; companion brolgas; and the traditions of raising the young of cassowary, emu, and dingo. It explores different pathways towards shared human and nonhuman animal spaces and how they found common ground outside of a contemporary model of domestication.

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