Barbara Miller Books Newsletter Nov 2022

Munganbana Norman Miller Rainforest print collection four panels

FREE ART PRINT 

Would you like the freshness and tranquility of the rainforest in your home? This is an opportunity to have a free gift of a print by rainforest Aboriginal artist Munganbana Norman Miller. Choose your favourite and enjoy. At the same time, help the artist get his beautiful work more widely known. Please feel free to forward on this great opportunity. Check here for more details – https://www.artprintsbymunganbana.com/
 
Munganbana Norman Miller in tropical garden with Rainforest prints
Munganbana means Mountain Water and aptly describes his work – powerful and peaceful – and the land from which he comes – crystal cascades and volcanic lakes. Munganbana is of the Jirrbal, Bar-Barrum and Tableland Yidinji tribes of the North Queensland rainforest, a World Heritage-listed area. He specializes in limited edition lino prints, acrylic on canvas, greeting cards, batik wall hangings, batik dress lengths, and silk scarves. Munganbana has a workshop in his own gallery in Cairns, one of the few Aboriginal artist-owned galleries in the region and his work is very popular with international tourists. He regularly does art classes for schools or has school groups come into his gallery for workshops. He has a book with 200 paintings and stories to go with them. See https://munganbana.com.au/books/
 
Secrets and Lies Book promo - packed with political intrigue and brings to life an interesting period in history.
BOOK LAUNCH WED 30 NOV 6PM MUNGANBANA ABORIGINAL ART GALLERY 33 LAKE ST CAIRNS OF BOOK SECRETS AND LIES: THE SHOCKING TRUTH OF RECENT AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL HISTORY, A MEMOIR. 
 

This book has previously been launched on zoom only so we are taking the opportunity of presenting the prizes for a Big Boomerang Colouring In Competition for primary and high school students in Cairns and region that we have organised to combine events. The competition is to build awareness of a project we are promoting to build a Big Icon in Cairns like the Big Pineapple, the Big Banana, the Big Prawn etc. It would be Australia’s only Big Icon focusing on  Indigenous heritage. Prizes for the Colouring In Competition are family passes to Green Island on the Big Cat, Event Movies and Ten Pin Bowling and vouchers for accommodation at Coconut Resort and food at McDonalds and the Coffee Club. Barbara will also be giving away books. 

REVIEW OF SECRETS AND LIESThis passionate and deeply researched book shines a light on what Aboriginal really means. The author’s unique style of gonzo journalism is fascinating, and illustrates the power of on-the-ground reporting. Despite it being a work of history, this story feels incredibly timely, given the ongoing political battles for First Nation rights in other parts of the globe. All told, Secrets and Lies is an eye-opening and fearless reflection on a vital topic. 

Self-Publishing Review

Author Barbara Miller in her tropical garden with her book on William Cooper

BOOK PRICE SLASHED FROM $29.95 TO $7ea

Crazy discount for one more week only. William Cooper Gentle Warrior, a biography and history, is on sale and you can get 10 or more copies for the amazing price of $5 each – much less than what it costs to produce them. I have some special projects coming up that will make books on William Cooper in high demand so get in while you can. They will make great gifts and are good teaching tools. William Cooper started the first national Aboriginal organisation back in the 1930’s and was the father of NAIDOC (National Aborigines and Islanders Week.) He led his people on one of the few private protests worldwide against Kristallnacht, the start of the Holocaust. His legacy lives on and this book is highly acclaimed.

You can get it here – https://barbara-miller-books.com/

ANNIVERSARY OF KRISTALLNACHT 9-10 NOV

Shattered Lives Broken Dreams: William Cooper and Australian Aborigines Protest Holocaust covers the story of the Australian Aborigines’ League, led by William Cooper to protest Kristallnacht which he did on 6 Dec 1938 in a protest march to the German Consulate in Melbourne. They protested because the Nazis murdered 91 Jews, smashed the windows of numerous synagogues and Jewish businesses, set synagogues ablaze, and arrested thousands of Jews who they sent to concentration camps.  The book is on my website https://barbara-miller-books.com/ or on Amazon 

What was Kristallnacht or the Night of the Broken Glass? This is an excerpt from my book:

What happened that day in 1938 in Australia? A fire, not lit by arsons but by the Australian Government in 1949, burnt the pre-1939 records of the German Consulate in Melbourne. News reports of the 1938 event lay buried in archives for decades. What happened was hidden from our eyes. But when researchers unearthed it, the reverberations were felt as far away as Israel. It catapulted a humble Aboriginal man into the limelight, making him a hero, and it linked the hearts of Jews and Aborigines.
 

Let’s reconstruct it as best we can. It was Tuesday 6 December 1938. The German Consulate was at 419-425 Collins Street, in the heart of the Melbourne CBD. Collins Street was one of the most desired addresses in the city, and its Victorian architecture was imposing. World War 2 had not yet been declared. An elderly white-haired Aboriginal gentleman with a bushy white moustache named William Cooper made an appointment to see consular officials on 6 December at 11.30 am. However, he was just a name at that point. No doubt the Consulate would have seen the article in the The Argus newspaper on Saturday 3 December alerting them that this appointment was not so routine. The paper revealed that a deputation from the Australian Aborigines’ League (AAL) would meet with the German Consul to protest the “cruel persecution” of Jewish people and ask that they convey it to their government.

Perhaps it was a startled guard who first raised the alarm. A large group of Aborigines was fast approaching. It looked like a mob, not a deputation of two or three. They didn’t appear to have any weapons, but they were striding with purpose and getting closer. Would they try to overrun the Consulate? Bust their way inside? Damage any property? Perhaps their dark skin itself was threatening enough with Nazi Germany’s theories of the supremacy of the white race. 

The tension mounted. Gruff voices. Commands. Keep them out! Lock the door! We can’t meet with a rowdy mob! No telling what might happen. Don’t take any chances!

If the Consulate had not been located in a peaceful country like Australia, would warning shots have been fired over their heads – or worse?

By now, William Cooper and the AAL were close enough that the fierce determination in their eyes could be seen. This was the only protest march the AAL ever embarked on, and it was for Jewish people in faraway Europe, not for themselves, even though they were not citizens in their own land. Having lived under racism and discrimination in Australia, they felt empathy with another persecuted group. They were cut to the core by what happened to the Jewish people and wanted it to stop. They wanted to stand up and do whatever was in their power to stop the death and persecution of Jews.

Perhaps the Aborigines were simply met with silence and locked doors that day. Closed hearts; closed minds. Or maybe they received curt orders and shouts to disperse. Maybe William Cooper knocked on the door to no avail. Did he push the AAL’s protest letter under the door or did a security guard receive it? The letter has not survived, but its contents contained the AAL resolution recorded in The Argus:

“At a meeting of the Australian Aborigines’ League, a resolution was passed voicing, on behalf of the aborigines of Australia, a strong protest against ‘the cruel persecution of the Jewish people by the Nazi Government of Germany, and asking that this persecution be brought to an end.’

A deputation of aborigines who are members of the league will wait on the German Consul on Tuesday at 11.30 a.m. to present the resolution and ask him to convey it to his Government.”

Early that morning, they had gathered at William and his wife Sarah’s Footscray home. Today it has been renovated in the style of heritage houses that dated back to the 1880s by new owners. They would like to see it made into a museum as a tribute to William Cooper’s stand. It has a white picket fence, heritage iron lacework under the roof and over the verandah and a small garden in front with green bushes. Its wooden walls are painted yellow ochre with darker yellow ochre window frames. White lace curtains decorate the front windows. It is like a spruced-up step back in time. Amazing that when William Cooper lived here, he could not afford lighting or heating. He had no gas or electricity. He wrote numerous letters to politicians and newspapers by candlelight, sitting up in bed trying to keep warm in the very cold Melbourne winters. He gathered driftwood to keep a fire burning when he could.

William formed the Australian Aborigines’ League in 1932, formalising its structure in 1935. It became the first national organisation for Indigenous people and still exists today under the name of the Aborigines Advancement League. The earliest Aboriginal organisation in Australia was set up in 1924 by Charles Fred Maynard and called the Australian Aborigines Progressive Association (AAPA). Active only until 1927 due to police harassment and internal divisions, it was, nevertheless, a notable achievement.

The Cooper home was the venue for many of the meetings of the AAL, warming themselves in winter over hot soup and sitting close to a fire as they met in the front room of the house. Candles flickered on the mantelpiece. People like Lynch Cooper, William’s son, Thomas James, Shadrach James, Doug Nicholls, Margaret Tucker, Bill and Eric Onus, Caleb and Anne Morgan and white supporters Arthur Burdeau and Helen Baillee were the regulars William and Sarah hosted. These were among the people who likely marched with William that morning to the German Consulate although the AAL did not keep a list of names of those there that day. William would also walk to meeting places as he could not afford a car or public transport. He saved his pension money for stamps for his innumerable letters. But he was a proud man and did not complain …

William probably moved the motion as he was an avid reader of newspapers and tried to keep up with news in Australia and overseas. It was approved. There would have been a passionate discussion as William told them that the Nazis had murdered 91 Jews, smashed the windows of numerous synagogues and Jewish businesses, set synagogues ablaze, and arrested thousands of Jews who they sent to concentration camps. There would have been outrage mixed with tears.”


  
BOOK OF THE MONTH 

framers or hunter gatherers book

Farmers or Hunter-gatherers?: The Dark Emu Debate by Peter Sutton & Keryn Walshe has just been short-listed for the Prime Minister’s Literary Award. This is interesting as it is a criticism of the controversial and acclaimed book called Dark Emu by Bruce Pascoe. The book description on Amazon says:

An authoritative study of pre-colonial Australia that dismantles and reframes popular narratives of First Nations land management and food production.

Australians’ understanding of Aboriginal society prior to the British invasion from 1788 has been transformed since the publication of Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu in 2014. It argued that classical Aboriginal society was more sophisticated than Australians had been led to believe because it resembled more closely the farming communities of Europe.

In Farmers or Hunter-gatherers? Peter Sutton and Keryn Walshe ask why Australians have been so receptive to the notion that farming represents an advance from hunting and gathering. Drawing on the knowledge of Aboriginal elders, previously not included within this discussion, and decades of anthropological scholarship, Sutton and Walshe provide extensive evidence to support their argument that classical Aboriginal society was a hunter-gatherer society and as sophisticated as the traditional European farming methods.

Farmers or Hunter-gatherers? asks Australians to develop a deeper understanding and appreciation of Aboriginal society and culture.

Read it here

Newsletter Sept 2022

Hi all you wonderful readers – I hope that even if you are busy, you are able to have a little time out to read to refresh you and stimulate you. If you have a favourite book, please tell me about it. Also, what book would you recommend to readers?

NEW WRITING PROJECT FOR SCHOOLS & ADULTS ON THE HOLOCAUST


Holocaust education is important when there is so much Holocaust denial and distortion out there. Also, this study looks at the causes of antisemitism and what we can do about it. It is suitable for upper primary school and adults and I hope it will be used overseas as well as in Australia. Negotiations of course need to be held with curriculum developers. More information coming out soon.

BELOW COST SALE
WILLIAM COOPER GENTLE WARRIOR

Slashed from $29.95 to $7ea for September only.
Sales of 10 or more copies, the low price of $5 each
$12 Shipping for 1 copy. $2 extra for each additional copy. 
Email me for direct sales here

william cooper book insert flier

the big boomerang next big thing

THE BIG BOOMERANG – THE NEXT BIG THING!


Munganbana Norman says – I have a dream of having a Big Boomerang icon for Cairns. To get some community support and publicity, I made a very big boomerang and put it on a float in the Cairns Festival Parade last weekend. Recently, it got some coverage in The Cairns Post and ABC radio Cairns will cover it soon. I hope that this project will get the support of Cairns, especially as it would be the only big icon in Australia expressing Aboriginal heritage.


It has been on my heart since 2017 to have a Big Boomerang icon for Cairns as then I wanted to get a Big Boomerang beside the Capt Cook statue as an act of reconciliation and to showcase our Indigenous heritage. However, the owner was not interested. Recently, James Cook University bought the site on which the statue stood and sold the statue to someone in a nearby town. It was not removed because of cancel culture. Now the Capt Cook statue, which was in the list of Australia’s big icons, has been removed from Cairns, it is important, as a tourist city, that we get another big icon.


So my boomerang is the next big thing. It is 5.5m wide and about 3m high. Either this boomerang or one the city comes together to build, could be it. It is housed in my Munganbana Reef and Rainforest Aboriginal Art Gallery in 33 Lake St Cairns since the Cairns Festival Parade. It is important because in all the big icons around the nation, none represents Aboriginal heritage. Indigenous tourism is a big draw card for Far North Qld.


I am hoping that the people of Cairns, the council, the Qld and federal governments, businesses, and of course our First Nations People will be excited and get behind this project. I have the support of traditional owners. We need to get a committee together to work on this project of the Next Big Thing or the Big Boomerang as the big icon for Cairns.


Many Australian towns have big icons – https://www.australianexplorer.com/australian_big_icons.htm – the Big Gumboot, the Big Pineapple, the Big Banana, the Big Prawn etc. Now we need the Big Boomerang. I think it will showcase Cairns and draw visitors to our wonderful city. We need cultural tourism and we need tourists to COME BACK to our tourist paradise.

WATCH THIS SPACE AS A BOOK ABOUT MUNGANBANA’S JOURNEY WITH BOOMERANGS WILL COME OUT IN THE NEXT 6 MONTHS OR SO!!

IS THERE A LINK BETWEEN AUSTRALIA DAY AND NATIONAL ABORIGINES AND ISLANDERS WEEK (NAIDOC)?

NEW OUTLET

Some of my books are now available in the beautiful Blue Mountains amongst an amazing collection of books by Indigenous writers, including children’s books. The Wiradjuri nation have an outlet in Leura and stock beautiful art as well as literature. See – https://bilingarra.com.au/collections/books-1?page=2

REEF AND RAINFOREST: AN ABORIGINAL VOICE THROUGH ART AND STORY
Now recognised among the foremost talents of this region’s outstanding Indigenous artists, Munganbana’s “Reef and Rainforest: An Aboriginal Voice Through Art and Story” is representative of the body of visual art, in a variety of media and styles, created over a period of twenty-five years.

Henrietta Marrie, Gimuy Walubara Yidinji Elder and Traditional Owner of Gimuy-Cairns
LEARN MORE

BELOW COST SALE
WILLIAM COOPER GENTLE WARRIOR

Slashed from $29.95 to $7ea for September only.
Sales of 10 or more copies, the low price of $5 each
$12 Shipping for 1 copy. $2 extra for each additional copy. 
Email me for direct sales here

If I Survive: Nazi Germany and the Jews,100-Year-Old Lena Goldstein’s Miracle Story is available here

Re White Australia Has A Black History 
Read about up-to-date information on William Cooper and the people he mentored and how they changed Australian history

Re Shattered Lives Broken Dreams

The Nazis shatter glass and shatter the lives of European Jews at Kristallnacht, the start of the Holocaust. An Australian Aboriginal, William Cooper, leads the campaign for civil rights for his people who are dying of poverty and mistreatment around him. 1938; two worlds, far apart. Cut to the core after Kristallnacht, can he do anything to stop it?
FIND IT HERE

BOOK OF THE MONTH FEATURE

We Pay Tribute to Archie Roach Who Passed Away Recently and Left His Mark on the Hearts of Australians

Title of Book – Tell Me Why Review from Amazon

‘Archie’s deeply resonant voice sings out – of a broken country and a life renewed. The voice of Australia.’ — Daniel Browning, ABC journalist and producer

‘Just like his early songs, Tell Me Why was written with empathy as its impetus and that intent shines through on every page. This is a phenomenal work by one of the most articulate and recognisable members of the Stolen Generations. It will be read, studied and discussed for many years to come.’ ― The Australian

‘Beautiful, gut-wrenching and compelling memoir’ ― Sydney Morning Herald

‘Roach is honest and humble in his oft-heartbreaking retelling of his search for identity, belonging and purpose’  ― Courier Mail

‘Best book of 2019: Tell Me Why by Archie Roach, a beautifully written autobiography that captures one of the most remarkable lives in Australian music’ ― Weekend Australian

‘Tell Me Why is an extraordinary odyssey and offering. Archie has come through snares, pits and suffering to bring us an inspiring tale of survival, grace and generosity. This book should be in every school.’  — Paul Kelly –This text refers to the paperback edition.

About the Author

Archie Roach AM, a Gunditjmara and Bundjalung man, was born in Victoria in 1956. Taken at the age of two from parents he never saw again, he was placed into foster care. He started writing songs after meeting his soulmate Ruby Hunter when they were both homeless teenagers. His heartbreaking signature song, ‘Took the Children Away’, from his 1990 ARIA award-winning debut album Charcoal Lane, has become an anthem for the Stolen Generations. The song was the first to win an Australian Human Rights Award and the album was featured in US Rolling Stone magazine’s Top 50 in 1992, won two ARIA awards and went gold in Australia. Archie’s recording history includes twelve albums, soundtracks, film and theatrical scores and his books include the award-winning memoir Tell Me Why, accompanied by a companion album, and the picture book Took the Children Away, illustrated by Ruby Hunter. 

Learn More
 

White Woman Black Heart: Journey Home to Old Mapoon, a Memoir

Oppressed Aborigines forced off their land at gunpoint. Over a decade later, one passionate young woman would take up their fight…

 

AVAILABLE HERE

Secrets and Lies: The Shocking Truth of Recent Australian Aboriginal History, A Memoir (First Nations True Stories)

Barbara Russell, a young woman from a white working-class family. A ruthless Premier Bjelke-Petersen enforcing legal discrimination. How could Barbara stand by and watch the feud of the people with governments and miners strip Australian Aboriginal communities of all they held dear? But what could she do to make a difference?

CHECK IT OUT

best seller amazonMy book Secrets and Lies is often no 1 best seller on Amazon Australia as an ebook in Discrimination Constitutional Law, Public Law and Civil Law – 3 categories. 

Newsletter July 2022

Hi all you wonderful readers – May you find time to relax and read in the busy lives many of us lead. Reading biography can give us wonderful insights into the lives of others, seeing them go through their challenges and seeing the inspiring decisions and journeys they have had.

Reading history gives us a context for our lives and the lives of others and helps us have greater perspective on today and sense future possibilities. 

FREE PRINT OF THE COVER OF DYING DAYS OF SEGREGATION IN AUSTRALIA. i.e. THE ACTUAL PAINTING WITHOUT THE TEXT. IT’S CALLED DREAMS AND VISIONS AND IS WORTH $80. SEE www.munganbana.com.au for more information on it. WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO DO TO GET IT? BUY A COPY OF THE BOOK FROM MY WEBSITE VIA GUMROAD AND I’LL MAKE SURE THE PRINT COMES WITH IT. HERE IS THE LINK https://barbara-miller-books.com/store/#dying-book. AS THE BOOK IS $24.99, THIS IS A GREAT DEAL!! 

DREAMS AND VISIONS

By Munganbana Norman Miller

This black and white print shows me thinking, dreaming, imagining, looking at the possibilities before me. I am musing, creating what might be. It is as if the circles are bubbles of thought and above them to the top left there are rivers of possibilities, stepping stones to the fulfilment of my dreams. On the right are vine leaves I can climb up into the future, the rainforest holding its treasures for me to find.


Amazon Review

The Dying Days of Segregation in Australia: Case Study Yarrabah (First Nations True Stories)
LitPick Book Reviews
Inspirational and an insightful look into Australian history
Format : Paperback

To most people in the United States, the word “segregation” will conjure up images of whites-only drinking fountains or, if being optimistic, the late leader Nelson Mandela. But this abhorrent situation of separating the races was not wholly unique to South Africa or post-Civil War America. In Australia, Aboriginal peoples suffered apartheid-like conditions that prevented full freedom, happiness, and social mobility.

The Dying Days of Segregation in Australia wastes no time letting readers know about the recently removed, yet vastly underreported, institutional barriers to equality. One man’s anecdote tells of a childhood spent sitting in the hard, uncomfortable seats in the back of a movie theater, since the soft canvas chairs in the front were only for white patrons. As if that wasn’t upsetting enough, his story takes a dark turn — even in the hospital, all of the white patients had to be seen first. It is clear that racism, especially when endorsed by the government, is a matter of life or death.

Author Barbara Miller’s clear historical approach, peppered with deeply emotional stories of the best and worst of mankind, is sure to appeal to people who want to better understand the complex, disturbing nature of racial hierarchies …

IT IS NAIDOC WEEK AND WILLIAM COOPER IS THE FATHER OF NAIDOC SO WHAT BETTER TIME THAN TO READ A BOOK ABOUT HIM.

White Australia Has A Black History talks about his work for the “uplift” as he called it, for Aboriginal Australians. National Aboriginal and Islander Day Observance Committee came about because a committed Aboriginal Christian named William Cooper persuaded the churches to institute Aboriginal Sunday which later became Aborigines Day, a secular observance and later NAIDOC week.

He got the National Missionary Council to promote an annual Aboriginal Sunday, the first of which was on 28 Jan 1940. Aboriginal Sunday, as a national day of observance for Aboriginal people ran from 1940 to 1954, being held the Sunday before Australia Day.

In 1955, the date changed to the first Sunday in July and became known as National Aborigines Day. In 1957, the National Aborigines Day Observance Committee (NADOC) was formed whose goal was to promote awareness of Aboriginal people, their cultures and their plight. In 1989, the title changed to NAIDOC Week to include Torres Strait Islanders in the national celebrations.

Join in your local celebrations and read about him here

William Cooper Gentle Warrior is available with FREE SHIPPING. Find it here.

William Cooper led the Australian Aborigines’ League on a protest march to the German Consulate in Melbourne against Kristallnacht, the start of the Holocaust, in 1938 even though Aboriginals were not citizens of Australia. 

Amazon Review

Shattered Lives Broken Dreams: William Cooper and Australian Aborigines Protest Holocaust (First Nations True Stories)
PAR
This novel may just change your life!
November 22, 2021
Format : Paperback | Verified Purchase

As an member of a multicultural family I cannot tell you how your story came so close the my heart. I read and learned the history of your country and who William Cooper was and how he fought for the rights of all. This is a history that I did not know. Ms. Miller you presented it in a manner that was easy to read, and from what I read of all the acolytes that I were on the Amazon page everyone talked about the life long journey you took to assure that the story was told correctly. I would like to thank you for this work that you have done, and for sharing that work with the rest of the world. It shows that people will listen. That changes can be made. It takes a few of to stand up, to share, to educate a few others, and they tell others and it grows. I was so blessed the day that I received your novel. I highly recommend it to others.

 

White Woman Black Heart: Journey Home to Old Mapoon, a Memoir
Amazon ReviewWhite Woman Black Heart: Journey Home to Old Mapoon, A Memoir (First Nations True Stories)
Kindle Customer
Born of another race
October 9, 2021
Format : Paperback | Verified Purchase
Story of the aboriginal people of Australia as experienced by a white woman. Barbara Miller was raised by a typical Australian couple. Somehow though their attitudes and prejudices did not take root in her. Instead she became a champion for the rights and reparations due the Aboriginal people. She spent her life helping them legally establish those rights. She also married into that group.Check it out hereAmazon Review
Secrets and Lies: The Shocking Truth of Recent Australian Aboriginal History, A Memoir (First Nations True Stories)
Joy RS
A memoir with a punch
October 24, 2021
Format : Paperback | Verified Purchase
This is a frank and compelling story of a fight that should never have had to happen. Personal anecdotes are interwoven with a very important message for us all and the photographs bring it very close. This author’s writing about the marginalised people in Australia has always resonated with me. I am South African and witnessed the end of apartheid and the inclusion of every citizen as a human being with equal rights. It has, therefore, long angered me that other countries have legislation and social constructs that are just as draconian as those under apartheid yet parade themselves as democracies. I was so glad to read this book, which not only tells Australia’s story of human rights travesties but also demonstrates that there are solutions. It is at once heartbreaking and uplifting and should be required reading for everyone who thinks apartheid is South African only and that there are human beings who are in any way less than other human beings. I recommend this to you as well!

You can find it here 

Left – Barbara holding an early copy of Shattered Lives Broken Dreams

Right – Barbara with Jeremy Jones after she gave a lunchtime talk about her memoir White Woman Black Heart at the Sydney Jewish Museum.

 

Newsletter Jan 2022 no 1

Hi all you wonderful readers – No doubt some of you are still on holidays and some are back to the grind. No! Not the grind – an exciting new year full of lots of opportunities and adventures

Review of White Woman Black Heart: Journey Home to Old Mapoon by author Barbara Miller

This is a highly engaging and inspiring memoir. At its centre is the story of Mapoon which has all the elements of a great drama with the violent expulsion of the community in 1963 and their triumphant return eleven years later. As the author explains she came almost by chance to be at the very centre of the drama which in turn dramatically changed her life. This book is essential reading for anyone interested in political and social change over the last 50 years.
 
Professor Henry Reynolds,FAHA FASSA University of Tasmania, eminent historian and award-winning author
Check it out as it is only $2.99 US for the ebook https://www.amazon.com/dp-B07CCMV6CP/
 

Wansee 80th Anniversary

We have two very important anniversaries coming up which we should remember because of the gravity of the inhumanity to man shown at each. On 20 January, we have the 80th anniversary of the Wansee conference when Nazi leaders developed the Final Solution to expedite the genocide of European Jews. This horrific story is told in both the above books, If I Surviveabout a Polish Shoah (Holocaust) survivor and Shattered Lives Broken Dreamsabout Aboriginal William Cooper who led the Australian Aborigines’ League on the protest re Kristallnacht to the German consulate in Melbourne in 1938. Both books can be found on my website with amazon links for ebooks. 

International Holocaust Remembrance Day

The other anniversary is on  27 January, the 77th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi German concentration and extermination camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau. In November 2005, it was declared International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust by the United Nations General Assembly. On this annual day of commemoration, the UN urges every member state to honor the six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust and millions of other victims of Nazism and to develop educational programs to help prevent future genocides.

Excerpt of horrific story from If I Survive

P 55 “Using bullets to kill Jews was not quick enough, used too much manpower and rattled some who had to do it. A conference was held to plan Hitler’s Final Solution on 20 January 1942, at Wannsee, a suburb of Berlin. Head of the Reich Security Main Office (RSHA), SS General Reinhard Heydrich, ran the meeting. Adolf Eichmann wrote the protocols, which included the words “transportation to the East”, a euphemism for the genocide of Europe’s Jews, who numbered about eleven million at the time. Josef Bühler, State Secretary of the General Government of occupied Poland, asked for the Final Solution to occur in Poland because transportation was not a problem. About 1,700,000 Jews were killed in Operation Reinhard.

Aktion (Action) Reinhard was the name given to the plan to send Jews to their deaths at Treblinka, and the other extermination camps built in Poland – Belzec and Sobibor. According to the Central Commission for Investigation of German Crimes in Poland, a fourth death camp had already opened at Chelmno, today’s Poland. The Nazis gassed the first Jews there in mobile vans on 8 December 1941. (Scapbookpages.com 1998)

 

BOOK OF THE MONTH FEATURE

Anne Sarzin and Lisa Miranda Sarzin wrote Hand in Hand: Jewish and Indigenous People Working Together as a project for the Jewish Board of Deputies (JBD) NSW who published it in 2010. While more stories could be added to it now, it is the most comprehensive, valuable, and inspiring book available on this important topic. The book has a focus on working together for reconciliation and justice.

For NAIDOC Week 2021, the JBD began a digital portal to build on the book. As their website says:

“The portal will provide a comprehensive overview of the Jewish-First Nations relationship in NSW and an inspiration to local Jews and others to continue and take part in the journey. This digital portal will expand on the Sarzins’ work and document the history; highlight key personalities and personal stories; catalogue collaborative work being done today and offer opportunities to get involved in it; present the work of the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies, and give access to important resources from other organisations.

“Here are just a few of the collaborations which will be featured on the portal:

 

European Quest to Find Terra Australis Incognita

I published  European Quest in 2014 and it is only available for sale through my website but I will soon upload it on Amazon. It is the fascinating story of Pedro Ferdinand de Quiros, a Portuguese explorer under the command of the King of Spain who had a great desire to find the large unknown land that he and others believed filled the gap between South America and South Africa and balanced the norther and southern hemispheres. He travelled through the south pacific and encountered Indigenous people along the way, landing on Vanuatu in 1606 and then was forced back. His second in command, Torres continued on and alerted Europeans to a strait between New Guinea and the land to the south. However, he was beaten by 6 months by Dutchman Janszoon who was the first European to set foot on Australia. 

I am also writing a new book that will focus on this story from a Christian point of view as there is a huge interest in Australia and the Pacific that de Quiros, a devout Catholic, prophecied “the south land of the Holy Spirit over the Pacific from Vanuatu to the South Pole. The island in Vanuatu where he made his declaration from is called Espiritu Santo or Holy Spirit in Spanish and they believe they are the custodians of this prophecy. 

Norman and I were asked to speak at the Vanuatu Prayer Assembly in 2012 and 2013 and we went to the very place where de Quiros made this declaration and met with villagers there. Quiros made it on May 14 1606 which was Pentecost or Shavuot and so the villagers celebrate it each year and also celebrate the birth of the modern state of Israel on May 14. How amazing! So much more to tell.

Question –What is on your reading list for the new year?
Let me know via email

Newsletter July 2021

Announcement My new book Secrets and Lies: The Shocking Truth About Recent Aboriginal History, A Memoir, is available for pre-order on Amazon for the special price of 99c US as an ebook. It will be launched on 3 July and will stay at 99c for a few more days. The print book will be available shortly after. Here is the link – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B095SDW3LY

I would love some reviews on Amazon please and for you to share about it on social media. It has had a lot of pre-orders already and so has been no 1 new release in a lot of categories – Civil Law, Public Law, Constitutional Law Discrimination, International Treaties, Sociology of Race Relations, Civil Rights, Australian and NZ History, Australian and Oceanian Politics, Study and Teaching and Education Reference.

This review came in today from Self Publishing Review – This passionate and deeply researched book shines a light on what Aboriginal really means. The author’s unique style of gonzo journalism is fascinating, and illustrates the power of on-the-ground reporting. Despite it being a work of history, this story feels incredibly timely, given the ongoing political battles for First Nation rights in other parts of the globe. All told, Secrets and Lies is an eye-opening and fearless reflection on a vital topic.

Norman made a large hand for me to promote my book and I am standing with it in his art gallery.

BOOK OF THE MONTH

This recent book by NSW Senator Andrew Bragg may be a gamechanger for Liberal party attitudes to the Uluru Statement from the Heart and the possibility of the enshrinement of an Indigenous Voice in the Australian constitution. Here is and excerpt from his speech to the Sydney Institue.

Buraadja: The liberal case for national reconciliation
by Andrew Bragg

The title of this book is “tomorrow” in the Dhurga language of the Yuin people – Buraadja is about the type of country we want to be tomorrow.

The question is, why write a book on the history of liberalism and Indigenous affairs?

The answer is that the issues facing Indigenous people are serious and often intractable and there is a question mark over the nation whilstever we live with “the gap”.

I believe “the gap” is the modern consequence of the “Great Australian Silence” coined to describe the nation’s blind spot on Indigenous matters by anthropologist Bill Stanner in 1968.

As I said in my First Speech to the Senate, it is the nation’s unfinished business.

Put simply, Australia is a great country but it has not generally been a great country for Indigenous people.

What I wanted to do tonight was set out the key liberal arguments for delivering on the Uluru Statement from the Heart.

Before I do that, I must acknowledge the support of my colleagues for this project. It’s important that people know the Liberal Party is still the big tent. I have been encouraged even by people who don’t agree with this agenda to write.

The book has a generous foreword from the Prime Minister who said:

“… for over two centuries we have perpetuated and suffered from an ingrained way of thinking, and that is the belief we know better than our Indigenous peoples. We don’t. We also thought we understood the problems facing Indigenous Australians better than they did. We don’t.”

Prime Minister Morrison is developing a strong record on Indigenous affairs which builds upon Harold Holt’s and Malcolm Fraser’s significant record.

Innovation and leadership on Indigenous affairs has been a thread of Australian liberalism. It has always been there. Indeed, Billy Wentworth was effectively arguing for a voice to parliament in the 1960s.

His contemporaries like former Liberal Party director Tony Eggleton told me Wentworth influenced Harold Holt.

Harold Holt delivered the historic 1967 referendum to arm the national government with power to legislate for Indigenous people and to be included in the census.

Sadly too many of us remember him for his death, not for this achievement which his predecessor (and probably his successor) was not prepared to provide.

Had he not disappeared, I believe our collective memory would place the referendum at the top of the Holt recollection pile. Scant detail exists on Holt, he never wrote his memoirs and there is just one biography written by the brilliant Professor Tom Frame.

Malcolm Fraser delivered land rights laws which have led to the bulk of the Northern Territory now being under the control of the original owners.

The Fraser era was not an era of economic reform but it was impeccable on liberal values: a fair deal for Indigenous people and a strong humanitarian approach on Vietnam and South Africa.

The thread bloomed during this period. I interviewed all three Fraser Ministers for Aboriginal affairs – Ian Viner, Peter Baume and Fred Chaney. They all say that Fraser was instrumental in delivering land rights in the face of enormous opposition from the pastoral and mining sector and the Northern Territory Government.

Yet the nation remembers Gough Whitlam pouring the red dirt into the hands of Vincent Lingiari. We don’t give Fraser enough credit for forcing through the first Land Rights system in Australia.

The renowned Indigenous leader Charles Perkins described Malcolm Fraser as the best leader on Indigenous affairs in his lifetime. He said Fraser was “A1”.

Our Prime Minister Scott Morrison has presided over the radical overhaul of the closing the gap targets in collaboration with the Coalition of the Peaks. I am sure this will be a historically significant contribution.

The PM has ensured this critical reform agenda designed to boost education, health and economic participation is now “co-designed” with the appropriate input from the community itself.

He kept his commitment and funded the Voice co-design process which is underway through Ken Wyatt’s department. We are pursuing a Voice and we maintain our commitment to constitutional recognition.

He has also changed the anthem. Australia’s greatest sporting champion Cathy Freeman said:

“What a way to start the year!!! A phone call from our Prime Minister to say that we are “One and Free”! Thank you!!!”

The process of writing this book has also brought out comments from other leaders.

Indigenous Australians Minister Ken Wyatt said: “It is a contribution and a call to action for us all. And this is what we need to help not only progress on reconciliation but the debate around recognition..”

https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B094775SKN/

We commemorate NAIDOC Week or National Aboriginal and Islanders Day Observance Committee from 4-11 July. It is fitting then to remember Aboriginal Christian William Cooper who convinced the churches in the 1930’s to commemorate Aboriginal Sunday. This became National Aborigines Day and has been transformed to NAIDOC so William Cooper is rightfully recognized as the Father of NAIDOC.

REVIEW FEATURE
Authors depend on reviews so I help other authors out with reviews when I can so I have decided to feature a few occasionally in case you’re interested. They are usually inexpensive and quick to read as ebooks on amazon.

Bold, Brave & Brilliant: 12 life lessons to cultivate mental strength and emotional resilience by Emma Loveday
While I didn’t agree with everything, there is a huge amount of useful information in this book from a writer who had social anxiety for 15 years and has successfully come out the other end to be able to help others. Each chapter starts with one of Emma’s colourful drawings which has helped her. Her key points are not to avoid pain in life which is inevitable and not to avoid failure because you can learn from your mistakes. She describes herself as the Queen of Trying. She talks about resilience and tolerating hardship, challenging your negative thoughts, not being a perfectionist, dealing with heartbreak, being vulnerable and adaptable and removing emotional roadblocks. She says everything worth fighting for involves a struggle and we need to prioritize so we are not overwhelmed. Much good advice. Reviewed by B Miller 17 May 21
https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B094XTXPHY/

Blame It On ‘Nam – How Education Became Indoctrination and what You can do about it: Become a critical thinking decision maker and advocate by Thomas Rowley, PhD
The author discusses the failure of the public education system in the USA to educate students in critical thinking and problem-solving skills. As an educator, he speaks from first-hand experience. He believes that the Vietnam War is one of the reasons for this. I won’t spoil your read by saying why. He is worried that many students and leaders in government, industry and education won’t listen to arguments that challenge their points of view. He discusses the effects of the pandemic and generational issues and is concerned re illiberalism. He recommends a plan of action and advocacy to deal with the issues raised. Reviewed by B Miller 20 June 21
https://www.amazon.com/Blame-Nam-Education-Indoctrination-critical-ebook/dp/B0971KXDJ3/

Farmers or Hunter-gatherers?

The Dark Emu Debate

Peter Sutton, Keryn Walshe

An authoritative study of pre-colonial Australia that dismantles and reframes popular narratives of First Nations land management and food production – Melbourne University Press.

My comment – Australians who have an eye on the media will know that Bruce Pascoe’s book Dark Emu that came out in 2014 has sold half a million copies, won him some literary prizes, led to a number of children’s books and study books for schools, led to a university professorship and generally made him famous. There has been little criticism until recently and now a new book by Sutton and Walshe has come out to specifically refute its argument that Australian Aborigines lived in villages of up to 1,000 people and were farmers not hunter-gatherers. There have also been doubts raised about his Aboriginality by others.

I read Dark Emu last year so have not refreshed myself on it. However, I thought at the time that the arguments were flimsy and stretched the point a lot. I have not read Sutton and Walshe’s book but know of Sutton’s good standing for his anthropological work at Aurukun in North Queensland.

Bruce Pascoe has apparently welcomed the debate according to Emeritus Professor Mark McKenna – https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/jun/25/bruce-pascoe-has-welcomed-the-dark-emu-debate-and-so-should-australia

Re Bruce Pascoe’s Aboriginality, just because someone is fair, does not mean they have no Aboriginal heritage. The long-accepted definition of an Aboriginal in Australia is someone who identifies as Aboriginal and is accepted as such by their community. So it is a personal plus community matter. I oppose any suggestion of having a national register of who is an Aboriginal. I don’t want to go back to the days of the late 1970’s in Queensland where the Bjelke-Petersen government wanted the government to define who is an Aboriginal.

Barbara Miller Book selection

Books on Yarrabah, Mapoon, William Cooper and de Quiros

The Dying Days of Segregation in Australia: Case Study Yarrabah – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07GF864Q6/
White Woman Black Heart: Journey Home to Old Mapoon, A Memoir – https://www.amazon.com/dp-B07CCMV6CP/
White Australia Has A Black History: William Cooper and First Nations Peoples’ Political Activism – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X1MYCDX/
William Cooper Gentle Warrior and The European Quest to Find Terra Australis Incognita:Quiros Torres and Janszoon – www.barbara-miller-books.com

Be blessed and happy reading!

Newsletter for Feb-March 2021

Spoiler Alert – new book is on the way. Possible title – Battles with Bjelke: An Insider View of the Aboriginal Movement, A Memoir. This may not be the title but it is a shocking expose of the treatment of Aboriginal people in the days of the Bjelke-Petersen government and beyond and their valiant resistance.

Left – Barbara with John Mark and Susan Brown at the Paanja Festival at Mapoon. They were visiting from New Mapoon. Right – Barbara with Henrietta Fourmile and Rev Dorita at the launch of her book at Yarrabah – The Dying Days of Segregation in Australia: Case Study Yarrabah.

Books on Yarrabah, Mapoon, William Cooper and de Quiros

The Dying Days of Segregation in Australia: Case Study Yarrabah – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07GF864Q6/
White Woman Black Heart: Journey Home to Old Mapoon, A Memoir – https://www.amazon.com/dp-B07CCMV6CP/
William Cooper Gentle Warrior and The European Quest to Find Terra Australis Incognita:Quiros Torres and Janszoon –
www.barbara-miller-books.com

Be blessed and happy reading!

Recent interview on William Cooper, Evian and Kristallnacht conducted with Barbara by Ruth Webb for Bendigo Radio.