Resistance, Activism and Empowerment

INS20004 12.5 Credit Points Hawthorn Available to incoming Study Abroad and Exchange students


  • One Semester or equivalent

Contact hours

  • 36 hours

On-campus unit delivery combines face-to-face and digital learning.

2022 teaching periods


Higher Ed. Semester 1

28 Feb 22 - 29 May 22

5 Jul 22

Last self enrolment:
13 Mar 22

31 Mar 22

Last withdraw without fail:
15 Apr 22

Aims and objectives

This unit focuses on the politics of Indigenous resistance, self-representation and sovereignty expressed variously through community and culture. It provides knowledge of Indigenous political movements, creative expression and other challenges to the colonial state, along with an understanding of assertions of sovereignty in a variety of ways including cultural continuance, language revitalisation, expressions of contemporary culture, and the fabric of peoples’ everyday lived-experiences Students will examine specific examples of Indigenous resistance to colonial hegemony including historical and contemporary film, TV, literature, sport, art, and dance. Through each, the strength of culture emerges as a recurring theme.

Students who successfully complete this unit will be able to:
1. Identify key moments of Indigenous resistance to colonisation, sovereignty, and self-determination in Australian history and in contemporary culture
2. Think critically about the diverse expressions of Indigenous culture and the way resistance is embedded cultural continuity in people’s everyday lives
3. Engage with scholarly debates about power, resistance, empowerment and protest in Australian history.
4. Confidently describe and evaluate the diverse and varied forms of protest, dissent and action that occurred at different times throughout Australia’s past and present.