Systemic Approach to Address the Process of Commodification

Rights, Reconciliation and Reality: Creating Opportunities for Participation and Spiritual Well-being
Part of the Contemporary Systems Thinking book series (CST)


This chapter discusses creating opportunities for participation through developing social capital,1 whilst mindful of the barriers caused by power imbalances and cultural differences. The central argument is that social marginalisation needs to be redressed systemically through improving health, education and employment opportunities that are responsive to a community, national and international audit of needs, opportunities and rights. Self-determination can also be seen as a reaction associated with what Pixley (1993) calls being a ‘second class’ citizen because of unemployment or because of a feeling of ‘being shamed’ in public places. Avisit to the bank, a shop or just being on a pavement outside a shop can lead to being asked to ‘move along’ by police or security guards. The rationale from those in authority was linked with themes of pollution (noisiness, drunkenness and being untidy or unclean). The fact that many Indigenous people come to Alice for sorry business, to visit family and access essential services, means that people often camp with relatives or on the perimeter of town camps or in the Todd River. There are no public showers and Indigenous people have limited access to public amenities, many of which are available only during business hours and require payment to an attendant. At worst, it can cause situations like the one described above. The unnecessary response is the tail end of a series of misdirected systems. The link between current feelings about citizenship status and movements for self-determination is complex, but there is a link between the two. I am not however trying to reduce the land rights movement to an access issue, but a feeling of not being welcome ‘in one’s own land’ and ‘being shamed’ does play a role in the nation within a nation movement that can restore a sense of pride in being Indigenous and a sense of well-being.


Young People Social Capital Indigenous People Aboriginal People Torres Strait Islander 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Flinders Institute of Public Policy and ManagementFlinders UniversityAdelaideAustralia

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