Sociology Essay

501 WordsApr 11, 20123 Pages
The tragic past and present experiences of the Stolen Generations can be better understood through the use of sociological imagination. Sociological imagination allows us to link personal experiences and factors such as race, ethnicity, age, and gender with sociopolitical and socioeconomic circumstances on a wider scale, enabling us to make comparisons of the human experience across societies and/or time, and to assess how various social forces contribute to social experience, thus providing us with a better understanding of the cause and effect relationship between events. In doing this it is important to use critical thought, to take into account culturally significant factors and to recognise that the modern world is a product of history. In this case we will be examining the reasons for the Australian government's past policy of removal and assimilation of Indigenous Australian children, and the effects of this on the current state of indigenous affairs and the lives of people living in indigenous communities. As early as 1788 and all the way through to the mid 1800s Indigenous children were being removed from their parents through church run missions. In 1837, this practice was made official with the appointment by the British Select Committee of “Protectors of Aboriginies” in Australia. In 1869 Indigenous child removal legislation was put in place in all states and territories, giving the “Protectors” the power to remove children, and in 1937 assimilation was adopted as the official national Indigenous affairs policy. It was not until 1969 that Indigenous child removal legislation was removed. Even if past governments had good, albeit ethnocentric intentions, the effects of these policies have been devastating, and this dark and disturbing history of racism and assimilation still haunts many Aboriginal communities today. There is no single Aboriginal

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