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Dentrassi
GOLD Member since Apr 2003

Dentrassi

ZORT!
Location: Brisbane, Australia

Total posts: 3044
Posted:this vague idea has been stewing around in my head for a while, and an article today was a bit of a reminder:

Didgeridoo is men's business: academic
September 3, 2008 - 10:27AM
2008 AAP

Women who heeded an American activities book and played the didgeridoo face infertility or worse for infringing men's business, an Aboriginal academic has warned.

An extreme cultural indiscretion had been committed and the book should be withdrawn and pulped, the Victorian Aboriginal Education Association said.

The Australian version of the American activities book - The Daring Book for Girls - includes a section on how to play the didgeridoo.

"I would say from an indigenous perspective, an extreme mistake but part of a general ignorance that mainstream Australia has about Aboriginal culture," the association's general manager Mark Rose told ABC Radio.

"We know very clearly that there's a range of consequences for a female touching a didgeridoo.

"Infertility would be the start of it, ranging to other consequences. I won't even let my daughter touch one."

Dr Rose says there is men's business and there is women's business.

"And the didgeridoo is definitely a men's business ceremonial tool," he said.

"It sends out that Aboriginal culture is tokenistic. That is the issue that perturbs me the greatest."

Publisher Harper Collins has refused calls to withdraw the book from sale.
--------------------

theres a couple of areas that eek me here...

From the scientific perspective its somewhat hard to take this academic seriously when he links a wind instrument and female fertility - heaven knows how female tuba players can sleep at night! i like the 'or worse' bit... whats going to happen?!

claiming some sort of ownership over blowing into a tube and combining breath and vibrating lips is like trying to claim traditional ownerhip over using a stick. who knows whether it was an indigeous australian with a lump of termite-eaten wood, or an islander with a conch shell, or some pre-mesopotanian with a carved piece of wood or a bone, to work out a nifty trick about resonance?

Im not ignorant of Aboriginal culture, but in my values, the rights of women to do as they please is a more important concept that upholding indigineous traditions.

I seem to recall having a chat with Mr & Mrs Durbs when they were passing through brisbane last (i remember strange things sometimes) about current Indigineous peoples having the legal right to use their traditional legal system on their land over the court system the rest of our country uses. I thought about that for a while, and i concluded that i have no problem with that, as long as that does not interfere with an individuals rights - as there having been cases of rape of minors being claimed as traditional marriage rights. Two articles of interest:

who knows about the bias or accuracy, but its the most comphrehensive article i could find on the role of indigineous women pre 18th century.
http://www.janesoceania.com/australian_aboriginal_anthropology1/index1.htm
br>
and another one specifically to overuling 'traditional law' as a defence.
http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/journals/ILB/2004/31.html
br>
It really seems a balance between maintaining certain traditions but giving up the superseded irrelevant ones, but who am i - just some ugly white boy in a well paid job in the city - to dictate what is relevant to modern indiginous culture and not?

Is it culturally insenstive to speak out against traditional customs? Im either going to be accused of patriarchal sexist oppressing the rights of women to blow what they want, or culturally insensitive racist b*stard who doesnt have any respect for a 40000 yr culture.

Is it defeating the point whereby we try to maintain and embrace indigeous myths, ceremonies, traditions, but pick and choose which ones we DONT like and dictating that the indiginous are 'allowed' to maintain the others?

and obvious thought is the any number of ridiculous laws in the old testement.

i suppose the use of the word 'tradition' has often been used as an argument against 'change' - even if it might be for the best.

anyway - thoughts, rants, alternative viewpoints, thoughts on other potentially irrevelant 'traditions' for indiginous cultures that tread the quagmire of political correctness? are there cases when values other than womens rights conflict with indiginous practise?
Peace out.
D ubbrollsmile

EDITED_BY: Dentrassi (1220415831)


"Here kitty kitty...." - Schroedinger.

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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:Hi Dentrassi :waves:

I am a woman who cares not for cultural norms or cultural expectations and enjoys pushing the boundaries of what women can do.

but, having said that -

I was told point blank by an elder that I was not to touch or play the didj as I was a woman.

To this day I will not pick up a didj, let alone entertain the thought of playing it. We have one in our house, and I am not prepared to even dust it.

I consider it to be respecting a culture where a direct custodian of that culture said to me 'this is our way'.

However, I am not sure I would feel the same way had it not been said to me directly.


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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:Originally Posted By: DentrassiIm not ignorant of Aboriginal culture, but in my values, the rights of women to do as they please is a more important concept that upholding indigineous traditions.

It's more than that. You have to realize that any other culture may take any invention of your culture and make a use of it that you might never predict. I am sure we might be horrified if *stops and thinks a minute* uh.. we went to another country and discovered that fine wine was commonly used as an expensive clothing dye but never drunk. We might moan and bray that it was a terrible waste of a 1977 Chateaux Le Pew Bordeaux at $600/bottle, but if that's how they want to use it, then let them.

They need to understand that women all over the world learn to play the Didg and haven't become infertile. They need to understand that none of these women mean to disrespect the culture. And they need to just simmer down and relax. If Aboriginals want to believe that and keep the Didg a men's-only thing then let any woman who feels that way not touch it.

And stop b!tching and moaning.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:I think a culture that has just spent the last 200 years having their culture denied and systematically destroyed by people who only recently arrived on the land, after having that culture for 60,000 years has every right to bitch, moan and complain for a while longer.

'they' need to understand smacks of the empire I'm afraid Doc, it sounds like 'they' need to be educated - maybe it's 'us' that need to be educated...

ubbrollsmile


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natasqi


natasqi

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Location: Perth

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Posted:Originally Posted By: AdeI think a culture that has just spent the last 200 years having their culture denied and systematically destroyed by people who only recently arrived on the land, after having that culture for 60,000 years has every right to bitch, moan and complain for a while longer.


I'm a big advocater(sp?) for the "look towards the future, moaning about the past won't change anything, toughen the **** up" kind of attitude. If everyone in Australia moaned about what happened to them/their ancesters, we would be one pretty unhappy bunch. (convicts, immigrants, asylum seekers, Indigenous persons etc)

From my point of view, I wouldn't hesitate to play a didj if I felt like I wanted to. I do not believe it would cause infertility (it may strengthen pelvic floor muscles though!)
If I am in a different culture, surrounded by it in their village, I wouldn't be disrespectful and play. but if I was at home I would feel fine with it.

When I'm in Thailand, I don't point feet at people or do feet things, but that doesn't mean it affects my actions outside that culture.

I wouldn't disrespect a symbol from another culture, i.e. a flag wherever I am.
I don't believe that a separation based on gender and 'man's business/womans's business' has much of a place in MY culture.


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Dentrassi
GOLD Member since Apr 2003

Dentrassi

ZORT!
Location: Brisbane, Australia

Total posts: 3044
Posted:Originally Posted By: AdeHi Dentrassi :waves:
I consider it to be respecting a culture where a direct custodian of that culture said to me 'this is our way'.


*waves back*
hmmmm... i find that fascinating. You respect an elder of the indiginous australians dictating what you are not permitted to do. How you you feel about partriachy of a church dictating women cannot be priests, for a range of arguments about as logical and 'tradition' based as the arguements of the elder for women playing the digeridoo?

(am somewhat playing devils advocate here - interested in what defines a tradition worth of being upheld vs one that isnt)


"Here kitty kitty...." - Schroedinger.

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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:great question Dentrassi - the Catholic church don't allow women priests - no worries - that's not the 'tradition' for me then

I can always find one that fits with my beliefs or I can start my own 'tradition' that allows women priests.

"do unto others as you would have them do to you" sort of comes to mind here - if I asked for a belief of mine to be respected, I would hope people would be cool enough to do that smile


I went to Catholic School where I was told I was not allowed to choose a boys saint name for my confirmation name, so I didn't. But now I practice another tradition that allows me to choose any name I like at my 'confirmation' in that tradition.

so I can quite easily respect anothers beliefs - however antiquated, but still challenge them in another sphere - I don't need to deconstruct everything, I can construct the other way...


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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

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Posted:Originally Posted By: natasqiI'm a big advocater(sp?) for the "look towards the future, moaning about the past won't change anything, toughen the **** up" kind of attitude. If everyone in Australia moaned about what happened to them/their ancesters, we would be one pretty unhappy bunch. (convicts, immigrants, asylum seekers, Indigenous persons etc)


fair point, but would you way the same thing to Holocaust survivors? to the tibetans?

Though I do see what you are saying - it's more positive to look forward than dwell on the past, but I reckon some room for grieving what has been lost and for crying over the atrocities is needed. If it takes 500 years to mourn the loss of a culture - so be it. Then look towards the future. But a time frame can not be put on grief.


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natasqi


natasqi

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Location: Perth

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Posted:To the Tibetans - they are still being oppressed, so I encourage them to be vocal and have protests until they reach their point of happiness.

To holocaust survivors - it happened, it was terrible, but it's in the past. For some reason, Jews are more sensitive than any other group that I know of.
We can make sexist jokes, blonde jokes, Irish jokes, Asian jokes, etc etc , but as soon as someone makes a Jewish joke "Oh no, that's too far!"
So I believe that Holocaust survivors, WWI, WWII, Vietnam etc etc are all in the same position.
It happened, it is in the past. You have a right to commemorate and mourn the losses, but not moan about it and stop cultural progress because you want to moan and receive more recognition of your suffering.


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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 2830
Posted:MYTHS ABOUT THE DIDGERIDOO

MYTH 2 WOMEN SHOULD NOT PLAY DIDGERIDOO

"This aims to clarify some misunderstandings of the role of Didjeridoo in traditional Aboriginal culture, in particular the popular conception that it is taboo for women to play or even touch a Didgeridoo.

While it is true that in the traditional didgeridoo accompanied genres of Northern Australia, (e.g. Wangga and Bunggurl) women do not play in public ceremony, in these areas there appears to be few restrictions on women playing in an informal capacity. The area in which there are the strictest restrictions on women playing and touching the Didgeridoo appears to be in the south east of Australia, where in fact Didgeridoo has only recently been introduced. I believe that the international dissemination of the "taboo" results from it's compatibility with the commercial agendas of New Age niche marketing.

My understanding of Aboriginal culture in Australia has been formed as an academic ethnomusicologist, through acquaintance with the ethnomusicological and anthropological literature as well as through personal contact, during classes and fieldwork, with the Aboriginal people in a number of communities in South Australia, the Northern Territory and New South Wales.

It is true that traditionally women have not played the Didgeridoo in ceremony. However let us review the evidence for Aboriginal women playing Didgeridoo in informal situations. In discussions with women in the Belyuen community near Darwin in 1995. I was told that there was no prohibition on women playing and in fact several of the older women mentioned a women in the Daly River area who used to play the Didgeridoo.

In a discussion with men from Groote Eylandt, Numbulwar and Gunbalanya it was agreed that there was no explicit Dreaming Law that women should not play Didgeridoo, it was more that women did not know how to. From Yirrkala, there are reports that while both boys and girls as young children play with toy instruments, within a few years, girls stop playing the instrument in public. There are reports that women engage in preparation of Didgeridoos for sale to tourists also playing instruments to test their useability. Reports of women playing the Didgeridoo are especially common in the Kimberley and Gulf regions the Westerly and Easterly extremes of it's distribution in traditional music. The Didgeridoo has only begun to be played in these areas this century where it accompanies genres originally deriving from Arnhem Land (Bunggurl) or the Daly region (Wangga, Lirrga and Gunborrg)

The clamour of conflicting voices about the use of Didgeridoo by women and by outsiders has drawn attention to the potential for international exploitation and appropriation of traditional music and other Aboriginal cultural property. In addition, the debate has drawn to international attention the fact that there are levels of the sacred and the secret in traditional Aboriginal beliefs, many of them restricted according to gender. Perhaps the Didgeridoo in this case is functioning as a false front, standing in for other truly sacred and restricted according to Aboriginal ceremonial life that it can not be named in public. In this way, the spiritualising of the Didgeridoo not only panders to the commercial New Age niche, but also serves as a means of warning non-Aboriginal people to be wary of inquiring too closely into sacred matters."

Written by Linda Barwick
REF The Didgeridoo, From Arnhem Land to Internet


If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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Stout
SILVER Member since May 2004

Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada

Total posts: 1872
Posted:

Interesting...According to Stone's link which purports to be 100% Aboriginal owned & operated (ABORIGINAL AUSTRALIA ART & CULTURE CENTRE - ALICE SPRINGS ) we have this idea presented as a myth.

Then we have the Victorian Aboriginal Education Association, which, is headed up by a white guy demanding censorship based on cultural insensitivity.

I'm wondering whether this is a tribal or regional thing. It's conceivable that some "groups" may prohibit girls or women from playing the didgeridoo yet other groups may find this perfectly acceptable.

Then there's this South African version of the story
link that supplies contradictory evidence.

Ade..from my perspective it looks like that if you were actually interested in playing the didgeridoo, all you would have to do is email those guys in Alice Springs and ask for "permission"

EDITED_BY: Stout (1220457341)


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=Flashpoint=
SILVER Member since Sep 2004

=Flashpoint=

Pasta of Muppets
Location: in the interwebs..., United Ki...

Total posts: 2719
Posted:Oh this topic is a doozy....
It's objectively, from a person ie me who has a culture of his own, an extremely grey area.

IMHO, all behaviour is based upon a "tradition"

I define tradition in this sense as a behavioral pattern which dictates decision-making. An extreme example is choosing not to harm someone, because the society you live in has decided as a whole that this is negative behaviour.

So, when a behaviour, in this case females not "being allowed" (because it may make them infertile) to play a didj, then, as a whole it affects the society in general.

Not being allowed to play a didj has less personal impact on the person thats not being allowed to do something, than a similar tradition, for example the Asian/indian (I may be wrong here) girl who was set on fire because she didn't want to marry the man whom her family had chosen for her.

Traditions bind peoples together, but what would be the consequence of breaking that tradition? Would the female in question be set on fire? Or would she be tolerated for doing what she wants to do?

Respect for people's rights goes both ways, surely?

Mind you, if I go to Thailand, I dont really want to have my skull caved in or shot by a policeman because I showed him the soles of my feet...

PLEASE NOTE, if you disagree with this, please post a reasoned reply, because this is just my humble response after a hard day's work, and I may not be explaining myself right wink


ohmygodlaserbeamspewpewpew!
ubbrollsmileubbrollsmileubbrollsmileubbrollsmile

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BansheeCat
BRONZE Member since Jul 2005

veteran
Location: lost, Canada

Total posts: 1247
Posted:Well, for a usually moderate person, i have to say on this issue, i am not so moderate. I definitely do not respect traditions, for the sake of tradition. I totally believe that some long held cultural behaviours and beliefs are simply wrong, or at best inappropriate in current times and blended cultures.

However, I do behave with respect to any cultures traditions when i choose to immerse myself within that culture. Because at that point, i have made a choice to be with them, and so will behave as they do to the best of my ability, or leave... So when in Thailand, i behave Thai.

Do I point my feet at people in Canada? Of course i do. Would I play a didg in Canada? yes. Would I do it in front of an aboriginal that held the belief it is inappropriate? No, unless I was a young aboriginal woman that wanted to push the point within my own culture - but I am not. So when with the aboriginal people, i do as they do, not because i agree, but because i am showing politeness , essentially.

I have gone into certain temples when i had my menstrual cycle, which is considered sacrilegious, and inappropriate. I was a bit uncomfortable,because the temple was not my own religion or community; but I did not comply with their tradition because I essentially believe that the timing of my menstruation is no ones business but my own, and not something I would have considered "dirty" or defilement by others. I objected to a natural female function being considered something to be segregated or hidden. But in this case, it was a private point made, obviously. Sadly, many cultural "traditions" are ways/tools that patriarchal societies used to keep women down, and retain power for themselves( men ).

My Thai husband and I debated these issues endlessly, having a very challenging time determining which part of each others cultures was to be respected, and which parts needed to be adapted. The process was very interesting, but tiring. Cultural teaching run very very deep. So many are not even conscious behaviours any more. So constant awareness and compromise is necessary for smooth communication. Finding out what points you are not willing to compromise is often very revealing...

Just because something, or someone, is old does not mean it is right. We should examine each situation and tradition with our full awarenesses and resources, and then determine the appropriate behaviour, not respond by rote...


If, as an outsider, i disagree with a certain tradition, i would support the people wanting to change it within that culture, but not necessarily protest it myself. Within my own culture, I am a complete s**t- disturber. I think we all need to wake up, learn from tradition certainly, but avoid dogmatisim.

This too was written quickly, so i hope i explained myself well enough, and without offense!
wink


"God *was* my co-pilot, but then we crashed, and I had to eat him..."

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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction, Aus...

Total posts: 13215
Posted:Has anyone mentioned poi yet? wink

There's no reason why traditional culture cannot change. I'm reading a book at the moment about women and their place in Ni-Vanuatu kustom and about how about 10 years ago there was actually a national initiative set up to include women.

Modern Values is also what has ended cannibalism in many tribal communities (not just Ni-Vanuatu) and there seems to be little bitching and moaning about that.

Cultures and their values move and change all the time. In western culture it used to be mighty improper for a woman to wear pants/trousers/slacks but this has changed so now that we can. Changes in culture can happen from a wide range of influences, both internal and external.

You don't have to like the changes (I certainly don't like the cultural shift to how women are portrayed these days) but it changes regardless.

Whinging and moaning about it for the sake of having a sook is like crying wolf and means that people are unlikely to care when you really do have a problem.


i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:Originally Posted By: natasqi
It happened, it is in the past. You have a right to commemorate and mourn the losses, but not moan about it and stop cultural progress because you want to moan and receive more recognition of your suffering.

Suffering is like depression - you can't just tell someone to get over it

People were removed from their families in the 60's(Australia's stolen generation) - you can't, in the year 2008 tell people to get over it because it was in the past - it's not - it's still their current experience. Not sure if that made sense - I'm trying to say that something that happened to me 40 years ago, can still affect me everyday and I can still be in mourning.

So it can take a long time for the generations to get over things and look forward


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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction, Aus...

Total posts: 13215
Posted:But is a woman touching a didg going to give a man lifelong trauma?

i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:Isn't it some kind of hypocrite to "respect" some tradition, just because you are in its country of origin? (no pun intended) But if you (as a woman) play the Didj in Canada (without having a problem), why would you not do so in Queensland? umm

Okay that question is a bit provocative and I do understand "why" - but IMHO it has less to do with "respect" but with "not getting yourself in trouble"... wink

As I learned, the accompanying myth about the origins of Didj is that it originally has been a male sexual organ and that a woman blowing the Didj was regarded as offensive (not sure why it is different with men).

As I learned, Didj has only been tradition to maybe 10% of the Aboriginal tribes in Australia - those of the North-East. Traditionally, paintings have only been used on Didjes for ceremonies and traditionally it has only been criss-cross and x-ray paintings. All the dot painting is not traditional anyway, it originated in Central Australia (around Alice Springs) and these tribes had never played Didj until recently.

Naturally many Aboriginals today will adapt to traditions, that originally have not been their heritage, as today the identification is more Non ./. Aboriginal, instead of individual tribes ./. other tribes. Especially when it comes to a habit vs. the white majority, Aboriginals might want to insist on "tradition" - no matter whether it is content or not.

I heard the story of a UK girl that was busking in Cairns with a Didj and faced open hostility by local natives, who asked her to **** off and stop playing the Didj. She came back next evening and did the same thing again, when she got hospitalized by those local natives. shrug Well I'm not pro violence and these folks should have faced the judge - on the other hand I guess the girl was simply asking for trouble.

Personally I'm not a friend of "traditions", which often appear as mere "rites" and lack a reasonable explanation. But who am I to run around this planet and tell everybody what they have to do - and how they got to do it? Unless their tradition does not directly harm or infringe with my personal rights, there is little ambition to change them.

Would I dress offensive when entering a church or temple? No. Would I run, yell or do anything else that disturbs the peace of a temple? No. Would I inform others that their behavior is disrespecting the tradition? Yes. Would I use violence to make them understand? No.

If women want to play the Didj, they should - even in Australia - no matter whether they are white or aboriginal. But I would advise them to be smart and not do it in public, at least not if there are natives present and that they definitely should stop once they get asked to do so by Aboriginal people.

Certainly you can tell people to "get over it" if you like - just they might not listen and maybe even take offense. In return you should not get excited if they resent. Everybody as they please unless damage occurs. If I - as a German - still take offense by accusations of Holocaust survivors, then it is a personal choice.

So for closure: for me it is not the "respect" for Thai tradition, when I am not pointing my feet at them or use "Kap" when talking to them - it is mere respect for Thai people (be)li(e)ving in this tradition...

Do I make sense?


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Stout
SILVER Member since May 2004

Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada

Total posts: 1872
Posted:Well, the publisher has caved in to Mark Rose.

The patriarchy has spoken

Also, he might just have been winging it. I went hunting in the Australian media.

This bit of investigative reporting by the Herald Suns Andrew Bolt:

"Does Rose seriously believe his daughter will turn barren at the touch of a didgeridoo, or does he think even the most backward superstitions should be honored, as long as they are black? And why, as someone barely black himself, does he assume those superstitions apply to him, anyway?
In fact, is Rose simply reinventing Aboriginal mythology? I ask because ethnomusicologist Linda Barwick writes this:
It is true that traditionally women have not played the Didgeridoo in ceremony. However let us review the evidence for Aboriginal women playing Didgeridoo in informal situations. In discussions with women in the Belyuen community near Darwin in 1995. I was told that there was no prohibition on women playing and in fact several of the older women mentioned a women in the Daly River area who used to play the Didgeridoo. In a discussion with men from Groote Eylandt, Numbulwar and Gunbalanya it was agreed that there was no explicit Dreaming Law that women should not play Didgeridoo, it was more that women did not know how to.

Didgfest Australia, an Aboriginal-backed festival of the didgeridoo, agrees:
There is a myth that women should not play the Didge. While it is true that women do not play in public ceremony, there appears to be few restrictions on women playing in an informal capacity. It is not taboo for Aboriginal women to play the didge in most parts of Australia, and there are occasions where women role play and take hold of the instrument in comical mimicry of men. In rare cases, some Aboriginal women in Top End communities have become proficient at playing the didjeridu, though they never perform in ceremonial contexts.


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FireTom


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Total posts: 6650
Posted:So whadda we learn from this?

-) Some tribes (namely those of Groote Eylandt, Numbulwar and Gunbalanya) don't know of any Dream Law that would prohibit women from playing Didj.
-) It is true that traditionally women have not played the Didgeridoo in ceremony.
-) there appears to be few restrictions on women playing in an informal capacity.
-) there are occasions where women role play and take hold of the instrument in comical mimicry of men [sic: not sure how welcome white women are to "role play" and "comical mimicry of (Aboriginal) men", however]

Please note that there might be about 500 (!) different Aboriginal tribes in Australia, of which maybe only 50 (!) played the Didj traditionally (before the arrival of the white man)...

So what result is that indicating?

You may play Didj, whether you're white or a woman - it doesn't matter too much. You can either listen to those who say it's prohibited or those who say it's not - YOUR CHOICE.

Whatever it is: I would strongly advise you to cease playing Didjeridoo in public, when aboriginal people (and especially if (drunken) men) are asking you to **** off and stop playing... myth, tradition, respect, lack thereof or not.

wink


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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natasqi


natasqi

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Posted:Originally Posted By: FireTom
So for closure: for me it is not the "respect" for Thai tradition, when I am not pointing my feet at them or use "Kap" when talking to them - it is mere respect for Thai people (be)li(e)ving in this tradition...

Do I make sense?

Heehee, that is also what I thought in response in your first questions - and yes, this is what I meant.

Originally Posted By: AdaI'm trying to say that something that happened to me 40 years ago, can still affect me everyday and I can still be in mourning.

I think that when something is used as an excuse for everything... i.e. I can't go to the doctors because 40 years ago... I trash my house because 40 years ago... I inject myself with meth while I'm pregnant because 40 years ago...

It just creates a gigantic barrier that cannot be overcome. We can't change the past. So yes, people have the right to mourn, but bitching and moaning creates a barrier.


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FireTom


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Total posts: 6650
Posted:...between them and you. wink

At the same time it can act as a binding link to someone else (who suffers the same condition or to someone who has an equivalent opposite syndrome)...

We can't change the past, which is why it's perfectly (ab)used as an excuse, rather than an explanation (i.e. "I lost my right arm, which is why I can't give you the hug I would love to give....")


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:From todays' Sydney Morning Herald:
[url= http://www.smh.com.au/news/unusual-tales...72593.html]Didj
article[/url]

and on the Andrew Bolt quote above - bolt is as far right wing as you can get, wouldn't trust his representation at all


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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:Originally Posted By: Stout
Then we have the Victorian Aboriginal Education Association, which, is headed up by a white guy demanding censorship based on cultural insensitivity.


what makes you think he's a white guy? Did you read the article to see what his country is?

He has traditional links to the land through the Gunditjmara Nation of Western Victoria.

Links to the land through the traditional custodians of the land is how it is figured out - not on the colour of my skin.

And when so many people were reaped, abused, stolen, married off to, etc...white people, as a deliberate government act (to remove aboriginal features from the people), then...skin colour gets diluted - but that is not what makes someone a traditional custodian of this land...


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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction, Aus...

Total posts: 13215
Posted:Originally Posted By: FireTom it has less to do with "respect" but with "not getting yourself in trouble"... wink


I think that confused definition of respect occurs all over the place. I'd be interested if the girl who was hospitalised was hospitalised by a group of men or a group that was mixed or female only. I would predict men who were simply trying to exert power through fear - so nothing to do with real respect.


i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:ok, so I have a question:

why is ok to respect the tradition of not showing the soles of your feet in thailand but ok to say that it's an outrage not to let women play the didj?

I'm seeing a bit of a double standard here, and I would like to get some insight into that...

ubbrollsmile


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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:Originally Posted By: Rouge DragonOriginally Posted By: FireTom it has less to do with "respect" but with "not getting yourself in trouble"... wink


I think that confused definition of respect occurs all over the place. I'd be interested if the girl who was hospitalised was hospitalised by a group of men or a group that was mixed or female only. I would predict men who were simply trying to exert power through fear - so nothing to do with real respect.

well said


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Dentrassi
GOLD Member since Apr 2003

Dentrassi

ZORT!
Location: Brisbane, Australia

Total posts: 3044
Posted:Originally Posted By: Adeok, so I have a question:

why is ok to respect the tradition of not showing the soles of your feet in thailand but ok to say that it's an outrage not to let women play the didj?

I'm seeing a bit of a double standard here, and I would like to get some insight into that...

ubbrollsmile

thats kind of the angle i was hoping the thread would take smile

maybe its the exclusivity? feet pointing is a social standard that would apply to any tourist regardless of gender.

over history theres been a veritable plethoria of religions/traditional cultures have placed limitations on gender roles, in which 20th century feminism made a healthy dent, and sometimes completely overturned (of course theres still work to be done, right womyn?;)). at the minor end of the scale your probably have ability to play a woodwind instrument, further up the scale is a burqa and a whole range of other sharia laws... at the absolute extreme might be FGM.

perhaps this particular debate should be how modern day feminism deals with traditional cultures? at what point do we just accept that its respect of culture, and at what point does than opinion turn to critical?

EDITED_BY: Dentrassi (1220573796)


"Here kitty kitty...." - Schroedinger.

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Stout
SILVER Member since May 2004

Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada

Total posts: 1872
Posted:Hi Ade

I was unaware that Andrew Bolt was right wing but does that mean he makes stuff up ? What i posted was basically him quoting someone else (Linda Barwick ) who was relating their anecdotal "evidence"

Looking at Mark Rose's picture, I assumed he was white and when I go back and look at that picture with another perspective, the first line in that article reads differently as well. Mea Culpa

So we can remove the meddling do good white folks going all PC from the equation.


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Stout
SILVER Member since May 2004

Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada

Total posts: 1872
Posted:IMO the Thai foot thing is a pretty weird parallel to be drawing to this issue.

I've spent a total of 6 months in Thailand and on my first trip over there I read one of those Culture shock books so I arrived thinking I was in some sort of rigidly self controlled society where I would be constantly worried about causing offence.

I quickly learned this wasn't true. I started asking Thai's "how to behave" and was told by pretty much everyone that I talked to not to worry about it as I was a tourist and fully expected to be NOT versed in cultural niceties.

I asked, specifically about the foot thing, ( pointing, stepping over ) and was told the same thing, it's not really an issue, just don't be a drunken censored about it.

Diss the King, and it's another story.

Banshee Cat nailed the reason why the foot in Thailand isn't the "outrage" that this issue is....you can choose to remove yourself from that culture. Meaning that if you feel really strongly about your need to point at people with your feet you might want to think about picking another destination.

This issue is about prohibiting an activity at home ( of course, to me personally it's purely academic ) based on superstition and a sexist value system we as westerners have been taught to question.

How does the far left deal with "conflicting" issues ( feminism anti-racism ) ??? I dunno, I think it needs a trip through the Australian far left blogosphere which IMO would be more interesting than the international one.

Just guessing, I say they'd want to avoid this one.


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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:Hi Stout smile
Bolt doesnt necessarily make things up but he did represent things in a light that is very skewed with his personal politics.

Cool on the whitey intervention thing

This issue is about prohibiting an activity at home ( of course, to me personally it's purely academic ) based on superstition and a sexist value system we as westerners have been taught to question.

Ahh, I think this is where Ive missed the point too are we talking about what we do in the privacy of our home or what we do when we are outside interacting with others?

Either way, I still wouldnt play the didj at home, as I said, I dont even dust the one that is in our house. Maybe I am superstitious (which I definitely am). I dont believe I will become infertile, but am trying to make sure I respect what someone has asked me to do/not do.

How does the far left deal with "conflicting" issues ( feminism anti-racism ) ??? I dunno, I think it needs a trip through the Australian far left blogosphere which IMO would be more interesting than the international one

Ohh did someone say far left? grin

I think there is room for paradox and ranges in the spectrum. A one size fits all approach does not work. We cant flick the swtich and change everything in society overnight its a slow going affair.

Sorry to everyone for seemingly always being on the soapbox soapbox about this issue, but its an important one to me - and apologies for no where near enough smilies sunny


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natasqi


natasqi

addict
Location: Perth

Total posts: 489
Posted:When I'm in Thailand in front of Thai people, I would sit in a particular manner.

If I was in Australia/anywhere else and not a guest at a Thai person's place, I'd do whatever I felt like with my feet.

Even if there was a Thai person staying with me, they might tell me that my feet are offending them (the soles, not the smell :P). I think that once they are in Aus, they have to realise that people don't know about Thai and their anti-feet fetish and therefore it is going to happen all the time. I may change my feet things at home just to make them feel more comfortable, or I might chose to say "Listen, this is my couch, I am comfy, learn to deal with it"

If I was a guest in an Aboriginal village, and they had said "we do not like/permit women to play the didj" I wouldn't touch it.

If I was elsewhere, I wouldn't have a problem with it. If I was busking with a didj (this is assuming that I would know how to play) and an Indigenous person came up and told me it was offensive for me to play, I would kindly inform that person that that may have been so in their tribe, but for many other tribes it is quite acceptable and by playing, I don't mean disrespect etc.

I wouldn't play a didj with Indigenous designs though, as I have no connection with Indigneous land or people and I personally wouldn't be comfortable with that.

So therefore from my view point, i don't think there are double standards.
Outside their village, I feel like I have the right to blow down a wooden tube.


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