Oodegeroo Noonuccal was the first of the modern Aboriginal protest writers. Known for most of her life as Kath Walker, she returned to her tribal name in 1988 in opposition to the Bicentenary celebrations. She was deeply involved in the Aboriginal activist movement and helped the successful campaign for the abolition of Section 52 of the Australian Constitution which discriminated against Aborigines.
She was a poet but also wrote short stories, essays and published children's books. In her life and in her writings she constantly sought to generate cultural self-pride by emphasising the value of her people's way of life.
The Oxford Companion to Australian Literature, 2nd edition, pp. 581-582
Slavery at Roy Hill, to our shame profound,
Wages for the blacks nil all the year round,
Slavers given free hand by police consent,
Winked at obligingly Government.
But a woman warrior where aid there was none
Led her dark people till the fight was one.
From 'The Dawn is at Hand', 1992
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