Blackfella Talk: A Critical Policy Analysis of the Northern Territory First Four Hours of English

Oldfield, Janine (2016) Blackfella Talk: A Critical Policy Analysis of the Northern Territory First Four Hours of English. In: Australian Association for Research in Education Conference, 27 November- 1 December, Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne.


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This paper presents a number of key findings in a PhD thesis that critically and qualitative investigated the 2008 Northern Territory (NT) school language education policy, 'Compulsory Teaching in English For the First Four Hours of Each School Day’. This policy led to the sustained abandonment of bilingual education policy in the NT as well as the demise or severe compromise of the nine remaining bilingual education programs in remote Indigenous schools. The paper relates some of the critical discourse analysis (CDA) findings of the policy text and policy discourse in addition to the content analysis and CDA findings of interviews on two remote communities in relation to the effects of the policy. The community interviews involved methodology that included critical participatory ethnographic case study research in the field.Given the onus on Fairclough (1989) and Reisigl and Wodak’s (2009) Historical Discourse Analysis, the analysis has been informed by the works of Foucault, Bourdieu, and others. As such, it explores in the policy the influence of neoliberal globalization, the positioning and representation of Indigenous people and how these are related to the nation-state. The strong Indigenous ‘voice’ in the community texts also allows an Indigenous appraisal of key facets of NT education policy formation and implementation.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Date Deposited: 18 Aug 2022 02:07
Last Modified: 18 Aug 2022 02:07

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