Traffick of Empire: Trade, Treaty and Terra Nullius in Australia and North America, 1750-1800

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Title Traffick of Empire: Trade, Treaty and Terra Nullius in Australia and North America, 1750-1800
Author Buchan, Bruce Alexander
Journal Name History Compass
Editor M. Kishlansky
Year Published 2007
Place of publication Oxford
Publisher Blackwell Publishing
Abstract It will be argued in this article that British colonial authorities in Australia employed a framework of concepts, ideas and assumptions then current in European thought in their efforts to translate the difference of the Indigenous inhabitants to the terms of European familiarity. This framework was also buttressed by a previous extensive experience of colonial diplomacy and trade in North America. By drawing on these intellectual and experiential sources, colonisers in Australia sought to represent the Indigenous inhabitants as 'savage'– lacking their own property rights or sovereignty. Some historians in Australia have focussed most attention on the concepts of legal thought – notably terra nullius– in seeking to explain the colonial dispossession of Indigenous peoples. A more potent if long neglected source for this dispossession, I argue, lies in the ways that Europeans thought about and practiced trade or 'traffick'.
Peer Reviewed Yes
Published Yes
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Copyright Statement Copyright 2007 Blackwell Publishing. The definitive version is available at
Volume 5
Issue Number 2
Page from 386
Page to 405
ISSN 1478-0542
Date Accessioned 2007-10-30
Date Available 2009-11-04T06:17:28Z
Language en_AU
Research Centre ARC Centre of Excellence in Policing and Security
Faculty Faculty of Arts
Subject PRE2009-History: Other
Publication Type Journal Articles (Refereed Article)
Publication Type Code c1

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