How to Say the Places and Words of Australia’s First Nation People
To celebrate NAIDOC Week in 2020, I thought I’d make a confession.
I’m sometimes reluctant to get my mouth around some words and names of our First Nation people.
I have a fear of getting it wrong and saying something stupid.
At the same time, I find this funny in that I’m a proud Australian Welshman and I’ll happily assist people in saying Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch.
Perhaps our predecessors from overseas countries didn’t help us much when they tried to convert the words and sounds our First Nation people were saying into what is known as the alphabet and its pronunciations – often getting it wrong or not recognising their different languages and dialects.
So, I approached a great friend of mine and asked how I should approach my reticence.
Not surprisingly, her answer was “Give it a go and try”. Her next words of advice were “Your sincere efforts will be appreciated and they won’t be offended”.
So, don’t be shy, give it a go. And check out the events for 2020 at https://www.naidoc.org.au.
Keep safe and I thank the First Nation people for being the custodians of this land and sharing it with Non Indigenous People from all over. As well as acknowledging them as the oldest continuous culture in the world (65,000 years plus).
Acknowledgement to BBC News for this insightful report.
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