Containing Queensland prickly pear : buffer zones, closer settlement, whiteness

Frawley, Jodi (2014) Containing Queensland prickly pear : buffer zones, closer settlement, whiteness. Journal of Australian Studies, 38(2), pp. 139-156.

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By 1925, the introduced prickly pear (Opuntia and Nopalea spp.) covered up to 60 million acres of Queensland and New South Wales in what was perceived as prime agricultural land. After 40 years of experimentation, all Queensland Government strategies had failed. Faced with this failure and a diminishing expectation that the land would ever be conquered, buffer zones were proposed by the newly formed Queensland Prickly Pear Land Commission. A close reading of government documents, newspaper reports and local histories about these buffer zones shows how settler anxieties over who could or should occupy the land shaped the kinds of strategies recommended and adopted in relation to this alien species. Physical and cultural techniques were used to manage the uneasy coexistence between prickly pear, on the one hand, and farmers and graziers on the other. Furthermore, this environmental history challenges the notion of racially homogenous closer settlement under the White Australia Policy, showing the many different kinds of livelihood and labour in prickly pear land in the 1920s.

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1 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 67009
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: prickly pear, racial formations, population politics, invasive species, management, biopolitics
DOI: 10.1080/14443058.2014.896824
ISSN: 1444-3058
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > HISTORY AND ARCHAEOLOGY (210000) > HISTORICAL STUDIES (210300)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Design
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Current > Institutes > Institute for Future Environments
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2014 International Australian Studies Association
Deposited On: 06 Feb 2014 23:19
Last Modified: 28 May 2014 23:48

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