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Unit 5

Terms in this set (6)

The term of this session is the 'Social Impacts of Treaty'. One social impact that treaty must avoid is a 'monopoly of debate' or 'Intellectual Segregation' in order to promote free and open discussion between all groups interested in the development of treaties. To prevent 'Intellectual Segregation' treaty discussions must move beyond legal and political bureaucracies for greater involvement by local and regional communities and organizations who have an interest in treaties. Let us concede that a legal and political strategy is important in developing a treaty process toward the protection of Indigenous rights. But what social and cultural aspects are we trying to protect? Language and education play a major role in educating all Australians about treaty. Moreover, language and education are crucial components to any treaty if the desire is to address poverty, unemployment and poor health. Fundamental to all societies including Indigenous Australians is the transmission of language, culture and identity to the next generation. Education and language are the glue needed to maintain, revive and reclaim culture. If the transmission of culture to the next generation via languages and education is interrupted, this has serious consequences for the maintenance of culture and diminishes the practice for Indigenous to be Indigenous. Languages and education are the medium that reproduces culture. Moreover, language and education can produce bi-lingual and bi-cultureal Indigenous Australians for greater control and autonomy over their own lives. Without educational agreements legal reforms are weak. In other words the legal and the political aspects of treaty only exist in the protection of the social and cultural aspects. One cannot survive without the other. Without an education and language strategy treaties become meaningless. Yet education and language have received little attention in the treaty debate. Indigenous parents who know best for their children cannot afford to be 'intellectually segregated' from the treaty debate. If treaty is a mechanism to address issues of greater Indigenous recognition, control and autonomy, then education of children should benefit from such a process.