We want you to come with us on our journey, our journey of songspirals. Songspirals are the essence of people in this land, the essence of every clan. We belong to the land and it belongs to us. We sing to the land, sing about the land. We are that land. It sings to us.’
Aboriginal Australian cultures are the oldest living cultures on earth and at the heart of Aboriginal cultures is song. These ancient narratives of landscape have often been described as a means of navigating across vast distances without a map, but they are much, much more than this. Songspirals are sung by Aboriginal people to awaken Country, to make and remake the life-giving connections between people and place. Songspirals are radically different ways of understanding the relationship people can have with the landscape.
For Yolngu people from North East Arnhem Land, women and men play different roles in bringing songlines to life, yet the vast majority of what has been published is about men’s place in songlines. Songspirals is a rare opportunity for outsiders to experience Aboriginal women’s role in crying the songlines in a very authentic and direct form.
About the Authors
Gay’wu Group of Women is the ‘dilly bag women’s group’, a deep collaboration between five Yolngu women and three non-Aboriginal women over a decade.
Sisters Laklak Burrarwaŋa, Ritjilili Ganambarr, Merrkiyawuy Ganambarr-Stubbs and Banbapuy Ganambarr are elders of the Yolŋu people of North East Arnhem Land. The sisters have collaborated on a series of cultural and research projects with professors Kate Lloyd, Sandie Suchet-Pearson and Sarah Wright.
Number Of Pages: 304