Yolŋu Studies Livestream Lecture Series

Lecture 30: Kinship with the environment

Lecture link: http://new.livestream.com/accounts/2047566/events/1840804/videos/58367057

[Watched in the College of Law, Room G021, ANU, 6pm Wednesday, September 17th 2014]

In this lecture Ṉäkarrma gives detail about the different seasons and their names in Yolŋu Matha

DISCLAIMER: at the present time these quotes may not be completely accurate, they are reminders of what we felt were important points in the lecture. In time we hope that we can correct them and more fully complete the transcription. If you have any issues or corrections that you would like to offer, please contact us at bookings@allianceaustrale.org

"I've been doing a little Dhawu, a little story ... This time of the year we are preparing for a ceremony - a ceremony that's during the dry season every year ... We've been busy with the ceremony. Young men going into the ceremony... They've entered sacred grounds... so they're not allowed to share cups together until further steps they go through. This ceremony ... comes from way over ... Queensland way near the border ... young men are taken away into the bush. They've been there for the last 6 months."
"Seasons of the year in Arnhem land. The which is the western winds ... and they are all related... The seasons in this are all Dhuwa and Yirritja and they are all related. Bärra ... to me it is related as Märi ... my mothers, mother's mob ... and that is Dhuwa."
"Miḏawarr ... dry season ... Dharratharra ... the south east winds that come through ... the cold winds ... Rarrandharr ... towards the dry ... Wolma ... which is the thunderstorm clouds ... Guṉmul ... the wet season."
"Today when we talk about seasons it talks about a lot of things ... winds ... how its related ... certain bush tucker ... when people hunt and gather."
"People are changing diet ... when we change our diet from season to season. ... Always moving from place to place ... when you move around people stay fit healthy and strong, walking, not living in one ... brick house that's got dust, smells of rubbish ... [but] through this ... changing places ... living season after season ... is always healthy."
"People call it ... dhungarra - which is for a year, 12 months cycle ... the season is the dhawal, or a time ..."
"Wolma and Guṉmul are the wet seasons ... its where you get thunder and lightning ... very very vicious ..."
"Like I said before I can't pull in everything - there's a of stuff, theres a lot to be discussed ... every season there is just too much to put on ... i'll just show you briefly."
"After that, towards the end of the gunmul which is Bärra ... You can use Bärra-ya."
"All these changes of weather ... they all work together like a big man gardener who's just planted ... whether its out there in the reeds and swamps ... or in the jungle ... its generating fresh food ..."
"The seasons can also be stated as being part of this clan-nation ... the weather, the seasons, the rains ... plants are all within that yothu yindi, märi gutharra, waku yapa."
"Miḏawarr ... fish is ready to be caught ... magpie geese ... "
"After the rain has stopped ... people start to go up the river ... [ŋatha!] After the dry season, after the knock-em-down rain came ... towards the June is a season called the Dharratharra or Dharratharra ya ... when kangaroos, wallabies coming down ... bushfire, just beginning to burn off certain areas ... you burn fire ... this is where we do the early burn practice ... through that we can collect food after the fire ... clear a way so we can go into the billabongs ... its not a vicious fire ... just to clear so we can move to another camp ... close by the billabongs where we can hunt and gather food ... "
"And then the Rarrandharr... which is after the month of Septmeber towards October ... dry season ... its the first stages ... "
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