Bruce Pascoe was born in the Melbourne suburb of Richmond and is of Bunurong, Yuin and Tasmanian heritage. He is an award-winning Australian Writer, Editor and Anthologist. He is a member of the Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-operative of southern Victoria, has been the Director of the Australian Studies Project for the Commonwealth Schools Commission and is a Board Member of First Languages Australia. Bruce edited the Australian Short Stories magazine from 1982-1998 and is the winner of a number of awards for his writing, including the Australian Literature Award for Shark (1999), Radio National Short Story (1998), FAW Short Story (2010), and the Prime Minister’s Award for Literature - Young Adult (2013). His books include Night Animals, Fox, Shark, Nightjar, Ocean, Bloke, and Convincing Ground: Learning to Fall in Love with Your Country, Fog a Dox and Dark Emu, Black Seeds: agriculture or accident?
Bruce Pascoe’s award-winning book provides an historical account of the sophisticated farming, fishing and land management practices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people across the continent prior to colonisation, exploding the hunter-gatherer myth which has been perpetuated to support the colonial lie of terra nullius. Dark Emu chronicles what Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have always known, that their reciprocal and interconnected relationship with the environment is both sustainable and sacred. Inspired by these stories of respect and connection, Bangarra’s Dark Emu is a dramatic and evocative dance response to the assault on land, people and spirit. We celebrate this sharing of knowledge, the heritage of careful custodianship, and the beauty that Bruce Pascoe’s vision urges us to leave to the children.
Shortlisted for the Victorian and Queensland Literature awards, Bruce was also awarded the New South Wales Premier’s Literacy Awards Book of the Year in 2016 and the Australia Council’s Award for Lifetime Achievement to Literature in 2018.
Bruce has had a varied career as a teacher, farmer, fisherman, barman, fencing contractor, lecturer, Aboriginal language researcher, archaeological site worker and editor.