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The Black Diggers

Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders in the Second World War

The Black Diggers by Robert Hall
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The Black Diggers explores the war effort of Aboriginal and Islander Australians during the Second World War and the reasons their contribution has gone unrecognised for so long. This is a comprehensive account of the work black Australians during the years when their country faced the threat of invasion by the Japanese. Despite suspicion and prejudice, they earned a place within the digger legend.

Dr Bob Hall unearthed previously unscrutinised records in Commonwealth and State archives and travelled throughout Australia interviewing Aboriginal, Islander and white Australians.

‘This is a timely and important book. Exhaustively researched, well written, balanced in its treatment and compassionate in its judgements, it sets before the reader a largely forgotten aspect of black–white relations in this country, and then invites us to draw the appropriate conclusions without beating us around the head with them.’

Jeff Grey, The Canberra Times, 1989

Aboriginal Studies Press; November 1997
242 pages; ISBN 9780855755805
Read online, or download in secure PDF format
Title: The Black Diggers
Author: Robert Hall


Illustrations ix

Tables xi

Maps and Figures xii

Abbreviations xii

Acknowledgements xv

1. Black diggers: The digger legend and the inter-war period 1

2. Neither necessary nor desirable: The struggle for the right to enlist 8

3. A community at war: Torres Strait Islanders answer the call 32

4. A change in attitudes?: Enlisted Aborigines and Islanders 60

5. 'We fight blurry Japs alonga you...': Aboriginal de facto servicemen 85

6. 'Treat a man as a dog...': Aborigines as a security threat 113

7. Indispensable to the war effort...: Army labourers in the Northern Territory 134

8. 'Angels with wings...': The isolated Aborigines lend a hand 162

9. 'They proved themselves...': Epilogue 189

Notes 195

Bibliography 214

Index 220

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Who were the Black Diggers? - SBS
Sun, 24 Apr 2016 02:22:30 -0700
SBSWho were the Black Diggers?SBSBlack diggers are the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander service personnel who fought for ...