Synopsis

 

The university: an institution, a bureaucracy, a corporation, a scholarly community? Whether composed of sandstone or redbrick, the university system has advanced colonial models of education and research through its intrinsic relationship to the Western and settler nation-state. In doing so, universities continue to exist as haunted sites of colonial power. They have historically functioned as imperial observatories to study and construct knowledge about Indigenous peoples, rather than by and for Indigenous peoples. 

This short documentary brings together Indigenous scholars, artists and activists from across Australia, the Pacific and Asia on unceded Ngunnawal and Ngambri lands at the Australian National University. What does it mean to be indigenous in the academy? How do we decolonise research and teaching? How do we build solidarity with each other across our differences? Here, the collaborators discuss important perspectives on the ways in which decolonial work can be undertaken at universities and beyond.