Up until the 1970s, a large proportion of Aboriginal people in Australia had some experience in institutions as part of government assimilation and protection policies. By focusing on three communities in South Australia, this book attempts to understand the consequences of this institutionalization for Aborigines and Australian society in general. Peggy Brock uses the word ghetto to evoke the nature of the missions in which many Aboriginal people settled for generations, as ghettos both oppress and nurture. The book shows that Aboriginal people often chose to live in the missions as part of creative strategies to ensure their own survival. This constructive and insightful study should become a central text in Aboriginal Studies and Australian history.
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