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CENTRE FOR INDIGENOUS NATURAL & CULTURAL RESOURCE MANAGEMENT

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Burning Questions

Burning QuestionsBurning Questions: emerging environmental issues for indigenous peoples in northern Australia is a timely survey by Marcia Langton, Director of the Centre for Indigenous Natural and Cultural Resource Management (CINCRM) at the Northern Territory University, which argues for the re-implication of Aboriginal people in the management of northern Australian landscapes. Langton exposes the science fictionsâ that have placed traditional environmental knowledge in a secondary position to western scientific thinking and led to misunderstandings about the significance of cultural and spiritual affiliations to landscapes, flora and fauna in the Aboriginal domain. She demonstrates that indigenous people have successfully managed the landscape for millennia and are responding to the challenge of sustainable environmental management in innovative ways which combine traditional environmental practices and western scientific insights.

"What's the dominant scientific perspective on northern Australia? - a vast sweep of land and sea carrying a precious cargo of native plants and animals, one of the last great pristine wildernesses of the globe, offering a pressing challenge for resource managers intent on conserving these assests. Marcia Langton shows that such assessments is comprehensively flawed, for they too frequently carry with them a blindness to the human nature of the land and seascape. Cared for, modified, used and loved by Aboriginal knowledge must come together for common good, and that more equal partnerships will not only humanise the landscapoe but also humanise our science." - Dr Stephen Morton, Program Leader, CSIRO wildlife and Ecology.

"For the benefit of our country, it's about time scientists, conservationalists and ecologists started to understand Yolngu ways of caring for the land. Marcia Langton' study is important in making our two worlds come together for the benefit of the land." - Galarrwuy Yunipingu

"Listen to one of the most powerful, challenging voices in Australia. Marcia Langton has a formidable mind, a fighting spirit and, arguably, an unequalled knowledge of Aboriginal issues." - Phillip Adams

"Marcia Langton stands at the crossroads of Indigenous and scientific coinservation perspectives and lets no one pass unquestioned. Her probing into these issues needs to be read by all conservationists."- Michael Krockenberger, Australian Conservation Foundation

For More information on how to obtain a copy, contact cincrm@ntu.edu.au or call (08) 8946 7756