Journal of Community & Applied Social Psychology

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Volume 16 Issue 5 (September/October 2006), Pages 337-409

Third spaces within tertiary places: indigenous Australian studies (pages 396-409)


This paper explores the notion of decolonisation by outlining the way in which Indigenous Australians are creating space within tertiary institutions as part of a broader project of cultural renaissance. We explore what ‘creating space’ means in terms of de Certeau's distinction between place and space, and also Bhabha's notion of ‘the third space’. We examine two instances of creating space. Firstly, we outline the general way in which Indigenist intellectuals have opened up space within the western domain of academia in Australia. Secondly, we refer to a specific Indigenous studies programme as a constructivist, process‐oriented approach to teaching and learning at Curtin University of Technology in Western Australia. While little direct reference is made to psychology in this paper, we suggest that third spaces are created as ways of thinking and doing, as social and psychological, connected to individual agency and political action as part of making space within everyday institutional life. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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