Race, reconciliation and justice in Australia: from denial to acknowledgment

Mark McMillan, Sophie Rigney (Lead / Corresponding author)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)
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The harm perpetrated by the state of Australia against it Indigenous peoples has been structured, prolonged, and driven by race. In this paper, we conceptualize this harm and how it has been denied (and particularly how race has affected this harm and its denial). Although transitional justice literature has not traditionally been applied to an established democracy like Australia, we demonstrate why it is appropriate to apply transitional justice practices to the relationship between the Australian state and Indigenous peoples, and what transitional justice practices might provide in the Australian case. In particular, we argue that a transitional justice framework may allow Indigenous voices to name the harm inflicted on them, and position the state as acknowledging the harm that they have perpetrated – bringing a fundamentally new relationship between the state and Indigenous peoples.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)759-777
Number of pages19
JournalEthnic and Racial Studies
Issue number4
Early online date14 Jul 2017
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Indigenous Peoples
  • Transitional Justice
  • Reconciliation
  • Harm


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