Faculty of Education and Arts
School of Communications and Arts
Despite the fact that varieties of Aboriginal English are widely used in communication in Aboriginal communities across Australia, the use of Aboriginal English in writing has been limited. A significant genre for Aboriginal writers has been the autobiographical narrative. In most published narratives of this genre, Aboriginal English has not been widely used. This paper describes and discusses an autobiographical narrative composed by Aboriginal author Glenys Collard and published by the Western Australian Department of Training and Workforce Development in 2011 in which the only medium of narration (except for utterances by non-Aboriginal characters) is Aboriginal English. Analysis of this text supports the view that Aboriginal English as depicted in metropolitan Perth exhibits significant linguistic and stylistic continuity with Aboriginal discourse in more remote settings. It is suggested that writing for Aboriginal English readership entails the emergence of a distinctive genre.
not open access