The Magic of Narrative in the Emplotment of State-Subject Relations: Who's Telling Whose Story in the Native Title Process in Australia?
Version of Record online: 20 OCT 2013
© 2013 Oceania Publications
Volume 83, Issue 3, pages 221–237, November 2013
How to Cite
Pilbrow, T. (2013), The Magic of Narrative in the Emplotment of State-Subject Relations: Who's Telling Whose Story in the Native Title Process in Australia?. Oceania, 83: 221–237. doi: 10.1002/ocea.5022
- Issue online: 4 NOV 2013
- Version of Record online: 20 OCT 2013
- native title;
- subject-state relations
Since 1992 Australian Aboriginal communities have been engaged in a complex and fraught legal process for the recognition of their traditional rights to country (‘native title’). In this article I argue that it is theoretically and critically illuminating to investigate the broader ‘meaning effects’ of the native title determination process on the subjective experience of the state in Australia. The article demonstrates this through examining the narrative effects of certain discursive moments through which identities get objectified. Through examining such moments in the discourse and practice of native title from the perspective of a participant-observer, I seek to advance our theoretical understanding of how the narrative properties of speech (or other performative behaviours) in specific contexts structure the subjective experience of the state.