Michael Platzer

Document Type

Book Review


Broken Song which is ostensibly about the anthropologist T.G.H. Strehlow and his translation of the spiritual songs of the aboriginal people of central Australia. At the end of the book, one has some insight into the importance of these songs to the Aborigines and their belief system, but along the way we have an exciting examination of Strehlow’s human motivations: growing up trilingual, parental influence, ethnicity, Lutheranism, Australian identity, racism, aboriginal politics, academic jealousies, the pitfalls of translation, personal passions, adultery, possessiveness, and even his involvement with an unsolved child murder case.