Decolonise your booklist

All First Nations people deserve safety, equality and respect. As we approach January 26, here’s some tips on decolonising your reading list for the year.

The negative implications of colonisation continue to affect all of us, and one of the best ways to challenge racism, violence and discrimination is to take in what First Nations people – women especially – are saying. With listening and learning comes greater empathy, solidarity and respect.

Allyship is an ongoing journey, and can many different forms – from learning whose country you're on, to knowing which conversations to step into or out of, to calling out racism, to reading and hear from First Nations people. 

This list is full of recommendations from the last two years – maybe something you haven’t had the chance to read or listen to yet! – so doesn’t include seminal must-reads by authors and academics like Aileen Moreton-Robinson and Sally Morgan. 

Recent books by First Nations authors

  • The Body Country – Susie Anderson 
  • The Visitors – Jane Harrison
  • Returning – Kirli Saunders 
  • Right Story, Wrong Story – Tyson Yunkaporta
  • Edenglassie – Melissa Lucashenko

We’re also compelled to share David Marr’s Killing for Country – which details the violence European colonists (including Marr’s own ancestors) imported and inflicted during the Frontier Wars.

First Nations books for kids and younger readers

  • For 60,000 Years – Marlee Jade Silva
  • Welcome to Country – Aunty Joy Murphy
  • Walk With Us: Welcome to Our Country – Adam Goodes and Ellie Laing
  • In My Blood It Runs – Dujuan Hoosan, Margaret Anderson and Carol Turner
  • Common Wealth – Gregg Dreise
  • The First Scientists: Deadly Inventions and Innovations from Australia’s First Peoples – Corey Tutt

Podcasts by First Nations voices

  • BlakCast is Australia’s first podcasting network that’s owned and led by First Nations people. Launched in 2023, it shares stories and conversations with the aim to celebrate Indigenous knowledge, and to support empathy and connection between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. Check out its six (and counting!) programs
  • Blak Matters
  • First Things First