Effects Of Eupropean Settlements On Aboriginals

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Indigenous Australians have a history that spans 40 000 to 50 000 years, making the Aboriginal culture one of the oldest in the world. Before European settlement of Australia, it was estimated nearly 250 000 Aboriginal people lived in the area that would become known as New South Wales forming nearly 70 different language groups and tribes. Semi-nomadic in practice, Aboriginal communities lived in harmony with the land consuming the naturally occurring flora and fauna to survive, with the highest population density concentrated on the east coast and along river ways. Clans lived by specific rules and rites which dictated all aspects of everyday life from marriage to what foods they could eat. Tribal warfare was common and before white settlement this accounted for the biggest non-natural cause of death amongst Aboriginal men. The effects of the British occupation of this land would be devastating to the Indigenous Australians. Most significantly without having been subjected to the English diseases, a smallpox epidemic would wipe out approximately 70% of the Aboriginal population of Sydney and as it spread beyond the colony, continued to have devastating effects on the native population. Diseases along with significant dispossession from the land and massacres would be responsible for reducing the population of indigenous people in New South Wales by an estimated 90% by the 1900s. Today Aboriginal Australians account for 2.2% of the New South Wales population and almost 30% of the total indigenous population of Australia. Whilst the greatest number of Aboriginal people live in west and south western suburbs of Sydney, the largest concentration of Indigenous communities are found in regional western New South Wales, accounting for just under 20% of the total population in the area While the British settlers had a hand in the intentional eradication of the

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