Mathinna

Listen to Mathinna: Nursery

  • Tasmania
  • Music, Highlights

This track includes a voicing of an excerpt of Mathinna’s unprompted letter to her father, written when she was 6 years old (see lyrics below).

At Government House, Mathinna is introduced to elements and practices of European culture, such as playing with dolls, types of furniture and western clothing. There is a sense of confusion, curiosity, anxiety and caution.

This track includes a voicing of an excerpt of Mathinna’s unprompted letter to her father, written when she was 6 years old:

"I am good little girl, I have pen & ink cause I am good little girl. I do love my father. I have got a doll & shift & petticoat. I read. My father I thank the for sleep. I have got red frock like my father. Come here to see my father. I have got sore feet & shoes & stockings & am very glad. All great ( ). Tell my father two rooms ( )."


From: Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania, Volume 102 - Part II, p. 51. Notes On Some Of The Tasmanian Aborigines, And On Portraits Of Them by N.J.B. Plomley, Department of Anatomy, University College, London. The brackets represent words which could not be deciphered.

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Mathinna