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The importance of the koala in Aboriginal society in nineteenth-century Victoria (Australia): A reconsideration of the archival record

journal contribution
posted on 31.05.2019, 00:00 authored by Rolf SchlaglothRolf Schlagloth, F Cahir, I Clark
The principal aim of this study was to provide a close examination of nineteenth-century archival records that relate to Victorian Aboriginal people’s associations with koalas, in order to gain a greater understanding of the utilitarian and symbolic significance of koalas for Aboriginal communities, as recorded by colonists during the early period of colonization. The etymology of “koala” is discussed, before an examination is made of the animal’s spiritual importance, associated cultural traditions, and simultaneous utilitarian role. At the time of European colonization in 1788, koalas were probably found in coastal and lowland forests and woodlands across southern, central and north-eastern Victoria.

History

Volume

31

Issue

4

Start Page

433

End Page

441

Number of Pages

9

eISSN

1753-0377

ISSN

0892-7936

Publisher

Informa UK Limited

Language

en

Peer Reviewed

Yes

Open Access

No

External Author Affiliations

Federation University;

Era Eligible

Yes

Journal

Anthrozoös