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UNSW Press UNSW Press

True Tracks

Respecting Indigenous knowledge and culture

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Indigenous cultures are not terra nullius — nobody’s land, free to be taken.

True Tracks is a groundbreaking work that paves the way for respectful and ethical engagement with Indigenous cultures. Using real-world cases and personal stories, award-winning Meriam/Wuthathi lawyer Dr Terri Janke draws on twenty years of professional experience to inform and inspire people working across many industries – from art and architecture, to film and publishing, dance, science and tourism.

What Indigenous materials and knowledge are you using? How will your project affect and involve Indigenous communities? Are you sharing your profits with those communities?

True Tracks helps answer these questions and many more, and provides invaluable guidelines that enable Indigenous peoples to actively practise, manage and strengthen their cultural life.

If we keep our tracks true, Indigenous culture and knowledge can benefit everyone and empower future generations.

‘Whether you’re a black CEO making an encrypted ledger for an art co-op, or a white soccer mum making a multicultural Halloween costume, this book might spare you a lot of heartache down the track.’ — Tyson Yunkaporta

‘The definitive guide to producing, telling, showing, and making Australia.’ — Tara June Winch

‘Terri Janke’s book is the answer to the grand cultural theft perpetrated on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples over more than two centuries.’ — Marcia Langton

True Tracks provides an authoritative guide that simplifies complex laws and cultural protocols, providing examples for those working in many sectors to enact key principles for Indigenous engagement, including respect and self-determination.’ — Anita Heiss

‘Dr Terri Janke’s True Tracks is a fantastic resource for understanding and engaging with Indigenous art, culture and traditional knowledge.’ — Turia Pitt

'If you want to write, talk about, illustrate or in any other way intersect with First Nations peoples and culture, then this is the book you need.' — Organic Gardener Australia