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Watery Histories

Date of publication
24-Jun-2015
Abstract
Engaging with indigenous accounts of the region's history, this paper argues that spring water and associated mythologies have critical historical import and agency. Drawing on rich ethnographic data, mythic modalities and accompanying historical vignettes and conundrums are woven together to produce a 'general account' of the region's settlement history. What emerges from this search for narrative cohesion and a general account are the ways in which localized narratives are continually interceded by the agency of water and fire. Taken as a whole the chapter demonstrates how this life giving liquidity of water and transformative radiance of fire are, in combination, forever recasting life and responding to historical contingency.

If you would like to access this paper please email: lrpalmer@unimelb.edu.au