Bruce Pascoe is a crusader. He researches history to tell the right story, grows crops to create commercial futures from native plants, researches language to maintain the flame for future generations and to help them know the strength of who they are.
Bruce is an Aboriginal Australian writer, from the Bunurong clan, of the Kulin nation. He has worked as an award winning writer, teacher, farmer, a fisherman and an Aboriginal language researcher. Bruce is the author of Dark Emu. Dark Emu challenges the claim that pre-colonial Indigenous Australians were a hunter gatherer society. The journals of early explorers, newspapers and records show the agricultural scope and sophistication of Aboriginal Australians when the explorers arrived - illuminating our past in order to light the future.
Bruce is involved in cultivating murnong yams and other indigenous crops to promote their commercial distribution. Did you know that the first bread was baked in Australia over 30,000 years ago, 15,00 years before the Egyptians used flour to bake bread? Norman Tindale documented aboriginal grain crops covered most of the Australia continent but contemporary grain areas make up less than a quarter of that area. What might happen if we explore those traditional grains and how they were grown in areas we now call desert? There is much to learn from our past to help build a stronger Australian future.
"You can't eat our foods if you can't swallow our history."
Please have a listen to Bruce as he tells you of the records of the explorers and early settlers regarding the sophistication of crop and aquaculture management.
Listen, have a read of Dark Emu and talk about it. Start a conversation …
Time lapse video of the painting of Bruce's portrait.