Miranda Must Go a year on

Solidarity is hard work; it requires critical self-reflection and a commitment to action on the part of the settler population. Coming to grips with colonial privilege by acknowledging the role that us as settlers play in the maintenance of empire must be seen as a necessary aspect of the struggle to decolonise not only ourselves, but our communities and our institutions and this country.

Sina Brown-Davis, anti-colonial activist

On collective responsibility and memory work

The Miranda Must Go campaign launched a year ago. In this post, I want to reflect on how in this short period, a white vanishing myth’s inextricable link with Hanging Rock has begun to be dismantled and why non-Aboriginal people have a responsibility to tell the truth about Australia’s history of violent occupation.

Miranda Must Go’s aim from its inception has been to contest the dominant association at Hanging Rock with Picnic at Hanging Rock, a story of disappearing white schoolgirls. What is objectionable is that this fiction, that masquerades as truth, elicits more consideration and feeling in most Australians than the actual Aboriginal losses and “disappearances” that occurred in the region as a result of colonisation.

Encouragingly over the year, Miranda Must Go has attracted a wide range of supporters, substantial media coverage, and most significantly, some perceptible shifts in Hanging Rock’s narrative. There is evidence that some Australians are no longer comfortable blithely celebrating Hanging Rock’s white lost-in-the-bush myth. Accompanying this is a heightened attentiveness to the repression of troubling colonial histories in the Macedon Ranges region.

An indication of the campaign’s effect is that in 2017 Miranda Must Go has troubled and undercut the 50th anniversary celebrations of the Picnic at Hanging Rock’s publication. As opposed to previous years, references to the fictional story have often included a recognition of Hanging Rock’s Aboriginal and colonial histories. Some examples include:

  • In events or reports celebrating Picnic at Hanging Rock people have been mindful to acknowledge the traditional owners of Hanging Rock, the site’s “rich and tragic Indigenous history” and concede that Joan Lindsay’s renowned novel has participated “in the history of settler fiction, of violent dispossession being unrecognised, of cultural forgetting”. Commentators have also remarked on the incongruity of “obsessing over the ghosts of fictional white girls and forgetting the ghosts of real Aboriginal people”.
  • A blog post published by the National Library of Australia, Picnic at Hanging Rock: 6 Suprising Things You May Not Know, notes the “success of the novel and Peter Weir’s movie overwrote the ‘true history’ of the area around Hanging Rock”. The library has also added posters and the website from the Miranda Must Go campaign to their collection.
  • Artists, writers and film critics are reassessing their attachment to the Picnic at Hanging Rock novel and film, asserting that Miranda Must Go “is a reminder that it matters what stories we tell”. Gomeroi poet, Alison Whittaker, offered an alternative perspective on the Hanging Rock myth in the prize winning poem, “Many Girls White Linen“. 
  • Miranda Must Go has been reported on extensively in news articles, radio programs and television segments, including a feature as part of the ABC’s Australia Wide program (starts in the link at 21:50). When the documentary series “David Stratton’s Stories of Australian Cinema” was released on ABC iView, the Australia Wide story, which included interviews with Hanging Rock’s traditional owners, accompanied the series as an online extra.
  • Mary-Anne Thomas, MP Member for Macedon, has endorsed Miranda Must Go, contending that more acknowledgement should be given to the history of dispossession of Aboriginal people, and its devastating impact, in the region.
  • The Picnic at Hanging Rock Wikipedia page now includes a mention of the Miranda Must Go campaign.
  • The Macedon Ranges Shire Council will hold “a dance flash mob” in February 2018 at Hanging Rock to celebrate 50 years of Picnic at Hanging Rock. The event, called “Too Many Mirandas”, encourages local people to dress up as the novel’s main character “Miranda”. The blurb for the event, however, also includes a striking apologia that acknowledges that the region has been significant to the “Dja Dja Wurrung, Taunguraung and Wurundjery [sic] […] for many centuries”. The council concedes that: “Stories of being lost in the wilderness are indicative of the European migrant settler narrative. They were uncertain and naive about the Australian landscape. This was in stark contrast to the traditional owners who had lived harmoniously with the land for centuries”. Organiser, Arts and Culture officer of the Macedon Ranges Shire Council, Robyn Till has also indicated the event will be opened by a joint Welcome to Country ceremony involving all three traditional owner groups.
  • [UPDATE 13/2/2018] Malthouse Theatre will show a return season of Tom Wright’s adaptation of “Picnic at Hanging Rock” in February this year. The Malthouse blog has posted an article reflecting on the Dja Dja Wurrung, Yung Balug perspective on Hanging Rock, with producer Jason Tamiru writing: “After speaking to family, the rightful name of Hanging Rock is Ngannelong. Picnic at Ngannelong. The truth is my people were hit hard during the frontier wars. The Western region is known to us as the Killing Fields. The naming of the Rock is with all those that come in my dreams. Australia is starting to learn that there is a black history in this country that needs to be acknowledged and celebrated”.

There is also sign that the shift in sensitivities may lead to infrastructural changes at Hanging Rock. In the Macedon Ranges Shire Council’s “Draft Hanging Rock Master Plan Options Paper”, circulated for feedback in August 2017, it was acknowledged that recognition of Hanging Rock’s important cultural significance for Aboriginal people was limited at the site. The paper also noted that “further study and collaboration with the traditional owner groups in the area is required and highly recommended”.

Whilst these changes demonstrate a discernible and welcome shift in the discourse concerning Hanging Rock, these symbolic acknowledgements are not sufficient nor has the colonial legacy or decolonial future of the site been adequately parsed. Meanwhile in 2018, not only will the council hold a flash mob Miranda dance at Hanging Rock, but cable TV network Foxtel will air its new television adaptation of Picnic at Hanging Rock, ensuring that the fiction endures in the minds of Australians, while few are familiar with the violent colonial history of the region.

Entrenched forgetting

Miranda Must Go was instigated because repressions of colonial history, and its destructive consequences, have become all too commonplace, and these omissions go too easily unnoticed and unremarked upon. When I first began research at Hanging Rock four years ago, I undertook a series of interviews with tourists and local residents about their associations with the distinctive geological landmark. In these interviews, Picnic at Hanging Rock evidently loomed large in people’s minds, whilst there were few mentions, unless prompted, of the Aboriginal significance of the site. Almost non-existent were recollections of a history that cleared Aboriginal people from the region. When interviewees did speak about these subjects they were vague about the details and expressed an anxiety that they knew so little about it. An edited compilation of these interviews can be watched in the video below:

Significantly in recent months, it has become common in commentary on Hanging Rock and the Miranda Must Go campaign for non-Aboriginal people to admit there is an absence of Aboriginal narratives and histories in the region. The recognition of absent stories, however, is accompanied by an admonishment that these stories are not non-Aboriginal people’s to tell. Luke Spielvogel, President of Friends of Hanging Rock, for example, told this to the Australia Wide program (starts in the link at 25:49) and Robyn Till said similar to ABC Radio National recently (starts in the link at 5:00).

It is noteworthy that non-Aboriginal people are sensitive to the necessity for Aboriginal sovereignty and leadership in matters concerning Aboriginal stories and traditional knowledge. Hanging Rock is located on the boundary of three Aboriginal groups, the Wurundjeri, Taungurong and Dja Dja Wurrung. The descendants of the people who met and held ceremonies at Hanging Rock for more than 26,000 years, before colonisers forcibly removed them from their lands, belong to these three groups. These traditional owners are the primary guardians and knowledge holders of Aboriginal cultural heritage for the site, and any effort to revive Aboriginal presence, names or cultural interpretation at Hanging Rock must be led by and centre their views.

Respectful expressions that underscore Aboriginal self-determination or the need to await Aboriginal leadership, however, have often become alibis for inaction – an excuse for non-Aboriginal people to change nothing and elide their own colonial past: the reason for the absence of Aboriginal narratives in the first place. Given Australia’s history of under-acknowledging the injustices of colonialism and its ongoing impacts – which include successive government policies aimed at the obliteration, dispossession, disenfranchisement and forced assimilation of Aboriginal people, entrenching prejudice at the core of the Australian nation – it is gravely insufficient to accept Hanging Rock’s cultural significance to Aboriginal people whilst avoiding collective responsibility for, and acknowledgement of, wrongs done as a result of colonial occupation.

Remember our troubling past

The destructive settler history of Australia is very much part of non-Aboriginal people’s story. Assigning this story to traditional owners only shirks the responsibility of telling the truth about our shared history onto already over-burdened, under-resourced Aboriginal communities and gives into a privileged position of passivity and inaction. Clare Land, writer of Decolonizing Solidarity: Dilemmas and Directions for Supporters of Indigenous Struggles, has asserted it is non-Aboriginal people’s responsibility to change ourselves and our institutions and “the most basic way to show respect to Aboriginal people is to find out what happened here”.

In Decolonizing Solidarity Land discusses the importance for non-Aboriginal people to self-reflect and self-educate about settler colonialism, and its ongoing impacts, by taking advantage of “existing resources and opportunities rather than burdening Aboriginal people individually”. She explains that:

When non-Indigenous people develop collective responsibility with each other they potentially reduce the burden on Aboriginal people of such education work.

Furthermore, Aboriginal people themselves continually urge us to break the silence about our colonial history, as can be evidenced by the push to change the date of, or abolish, celebrations of Australian nationhood on January 26. Numerous Aboriginal scholars and leaders have stated this truth-telling is the key to addressing Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal relations in this country.

Writer and historian Tony Birch, for example, has written that “before dialogue for the future can be accomplished, Indigenous people who lie in the ground and the past they inhabit need to be recognised and commemorated” and this “can only be done when white Australia takes vigilant responsibility for its own past”.

Additionally, Gary Foley, historian and activist, has asserted that one of the most important things non-Indigenous people can do is find out “what happened to the people who lived on the place that you live now”. He stresses:

it’s not just a matter of knowing who they were, it’s a question of what happened to them … and as you gain a sense of that, you gain a sense of just how enormous your own personal ignorance is.

Aboriginal land rights activist, Robbie Thorpe, has also explained that exposing Australia’s myths and deceit, from Picnic at Hanging Rock to the settlement of the nation under the false claim of Terra Nullius,  is essential to coming to terms with “the real history of what this country is all about” which has denied the existence of Aboriginal people:

What happened here?

Certainly, it is difficult to educate yourself on a history that has been continually elided or denied and where no prompts for memory are included in the landscape. As I have noted in a previous post, there are few local histories that focus on the specific experiences of Aboriginal people in the Hanging Rock region. Fewer still are local histories that draw on Aboriginal oral testimonies or consider Indigenous perspectives on decolonialising research. Enquiry into what happened to Aboriginal people when Europeans occupied the Macedon Ranges remains under examined and under resourced. Ironically, this is in stark contrast to the obsessive archival work and investigation that has been dedicated to verifying if Picnic at Hanging Rock is based in fact. Yet encountering these difficulties and historical oversights should press us to question the colonial constructions that produce these absences in knowledge, and persist with the work of exposing our troubling past.

Relevant to the Hanging Rock region is that many historians have remarked on the cataclysmic disaster that colonial occupation of Victoria was for Aboriginal people. James Boyce has noted that after the establishment of Melbourne in 1835, a frenzied land rush followed that was brutal and unprecedented. According to Richard Broome it was “one of the fastest land occupations in the history of empires”. Patrick Wolfe has also described that “colonists set about removing Native people from their rich Victorian grasslands with unparalleled speed and ruthlessness”, and as a result, Aboriginal people in Victoria “suffered a demographic collapse”. Woolfe writes:

According to the official figures of the colonial government’s ‘Board for the Protection of the Aborigines’, 2,341 Aboriginal people remained alive in Victoria in 1861. Twenty-five years later, that figure had fallen to 806. But the most intense attrition had occurred before 1861, especially in the decade following White colonisation in the mid-1830s. The lower end of estimates for the Aboriginal population as it stood in 1835 suggests a total of around 12,000 people (a figure already substantially reduced by smallpox epidemics). Eight hundred and six being roughly 6 per cent of 12,000, it is misleading to talk of the Aboriginal population of Victoria as having been decimated, since the population level fell to well below 10 per cent. This is far and away the largest fact in Victoria’s history, one that dwarfs the campaign for the eight-hour day, the career of Ned Kelly, the holding of the first Australian federal parliaments or the staging of the Melbourne Olympics.

Vigilant responsibility

Arguably it is hard for non-Aboriginal people to fathom the scale of the suffering and loss caused by settlement considering the historical disregard for Aboriginal people, and their dehumanization under colonial structures and processes. To combat this indifference, we must reflect on our colonial history, confront “Victoria’s largest fact” and listen to and confer with traditional owners, Aboriginal community leaders, historians and activists in sensitive, informed ways. We must hear the stories of Aboriginal resistance and struggle against ruthless occupation and understand the devastating impact of dispossession.

Recently, non-Aboriginal residents of the Macedon Ranges have expressed a desire to adopt an Aboriginal name for Hanging Rock, and have looked to settler records to uncover the lost name. The word “Anneyelong”, inscribed beneath German naturalist William Blandowski’s 1855/56 engraving of Hanging Rock, has been referred to as a possible replacement. Mandy Nicholson, a member of the Wurundjeri-willam clan and also a Woiwurrung Language Specialist at Victorian Aboriginal Corporation for Languages (V.A.C.L), has confirmed that whilst the recording of “Anneyelong” is evidence of a possible Woiwurrung name for Hanging Rock, it has been wrongly interpreted or transcribed by Blandowski. Nicholson has clarified “Woiwurrung words do not start with vowels. So the word […] would more likely be Nganneyelong”, however, the actual meaning of the word is unknown. Nicholson has provided the pronunciation of Nganneyelong [Ng-unn-eye-long] below:

While an Aboriginal name at Hanging Rock would encouragingly recenter Aboriginal narratives, non-Aboriginal people would do well to remember that the word “Nganneyelong” has a fraught history, it is a cultural fragment that has survived the attempted annihilation of a people and culture. We should acknowledge that profoundly racist, imperial attitudes caused this. Blandowski, for example, recorded this observation during excursions he made in the region and around the same time he created the engraving of Hanging Rock:

The natives, however, of this, as of every other settled part of Australia, are fast disappearing before the rapid encroachments of the white man; in perfect accordance with the universal law which governs civilization wherever the white man has planted its flag, sweeping the backward races from the face of the earth.

The Miranda Must Go campaign is concerned with envisaging ways Australian’s might feel the gravity of,  and take vigilant responsibility for, a violent past that led to real losses of lives, land and culture in the region of Hanging Rock (and all across Australia) that continue to have consequences to this day. To contest the obsession with white vanishing myths and counter historical ignorance, we must attend to these actual “disappearances” and their causes. It is very much our history to learn and to share with others. By making a commitment to self-education and reflection we can begin to apprehend the extent of our colonial privilege and embark on the hard work of decolonising ourselves and our institutions.

Amy Spiers, January 2018

Reading List

In the spirit of self-education and taking responsibility for our history below is an assorted reading list with relevant resources on decolonisation, white vanishing, anti-racism, memory work, commemoration and Australian history:

Links

Books and Articles

  • Bain Attwood. The Good Country: The Djadja Wurrung, the Settlers and the Protectors. Monash University Publishing, 2017.
  • Tony Birch. “Come See the Giant Koala”. Meanjin, no. 3 (1999): 60.
  • Tony Birch. “’The invisible fire’: Indigenous sovereignty, history and responsibility”. In Sovereign Subject: Indigenous Sovereignty Matters, edited by Aileen Moreton-Robinson, 105-17. Allen & Unwin, 2007.
  • James K. Boyce. 1835: The Founding of Melbourne & the Conquest of Australia. Black Inc, 2013.
  • Richard Broome. Aboriginal Victorians: A History since 1800. Allen & Unwin, 2005.
  • Clare Land. Decolonizing Solidarity: Dilemmas and Directions for Supporters of Indigenous Struggles. Zed Books, 2015.
  • Henry Reynolds. Forgotten War. Sydney: University of New South Wales Press, 2013.
  • Elspeth Tilley. White Vanishing: Rethinking Australia’s Lost-in-the-Bush Myth. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2012.
  • Chilla Bulbeck. “Aborigines, Memorials and the History of the Frontier.” Australian Historical Studies 24, no. 96 (1991): 168-78.
  • Chris Healy. Forgetting Aborigines. University of New South Wales Press, 2008.
  • Sarah Maddison. Beyond White Guilt: The Real Challenge for Black-White Relations in Australia. Allen & Unwin, 2011.

Get in touch via mirandamustgo@gmail.com to suggest other readings.

History research

In recent months, the Miranda Must Go campaign has been contacted by a number of residents from the Hanging Rock/Macedon Ranges region who wish to learn and share more information about our past and how dispossession has affected the area’s Aboriginal people.

There are number of local histories written about the Macedon Ranges, but few have focussed on the specific experiences of Aboriginal people and the impact colonisation has had on local tribal groups. One exception is a 2001 honours thesis by Kyneton teacher and historian Rachel Moait (née Tanner) which details her research into the Gunung Willam Balluk clan of the Macedon Ranges and also observes that there has been a lack of attention to Aboriginal histories in the area. Rachel’s thesis is widely circulated amongst local residents who want to know more about the region’s history.

Recently, Rachel contacted Amy Spiers through the Miranda Must Go campaign to say she is interested in undertaking further historical research on the Macedon Ranges in order to provide more resources for local people and schools. Rachel wants to encourage people to contact her if they would like to help. Particularly what would be most helpful is if people can suggest sources and provide access to records, like settler diaries and journals, that may offer further insight into the early period of colonisation and provide information about the local Aboriginal tribal groups and their contact with settlers.

Rachel is wishing to connect with other local historians, residents and Aboriginal groups who are working to learn more about the area’s history. If you have any leads that might help her research efforts or would like to connect with her, email Rachel (rachtann@yahoo.com.au) or Miranda Must Go (mirandamustgo@gmail.com).

Last week Rachel and Amy visited Skelsmergh in Carlsruhe (near Kyneton) on the invitation of current resident Steve Marriott. Steve explained that Skelsmergh is located on land that Charles Ebden occupied in 1837, becoming the first pastoralist to settle in the Port Phillip District north of the Great Dividing Range. Steve speculates that Ebden chose to settle the area as he was attracted to the deep waterholes in the Campaspe River in this location, which he believes were also significant to the local Aboriginal people. He is consulting with land councils and Aboriginal Affairs Victoria to learn more about the significance of the area for Aboriginal people.

Steve also shared information, drawn from J. O. Randell’s squatter histories of the Campaspe and Coliban districts, that indicates Ebden and other early settlers of the Carlsruhe area were hostile towards Aboriginal people. In Scars in the LandscapeIan Clark notes that Ebden and his employees had reportedly participated in massacres of Dja Dja Wurrung people.

Below is a picture looking across Skelsmergh and Carlsruhe towards Hanging Rock. You can see Hanging Rock in the centre of the horizon between the poplar trees.

How It Goes

On Tuesday 14 February 2017, Miranda Must Go campaigners held an Anti-Picnic at Hanging Rock. We gathered to contest the site’s habitual associations with Joan Lindsay’s novel, Picnic at Hanging Rock, and instead draw attention to the real losses and traumas Aboriginal people have experienced due to European settlement.

As Valentine’s Day is the date when the schoolgirls of Lindsay’s novel go missing and fans traditionally celebrate the book by holding picnics at Hanging Rock on 14 February, Miranda Must Go supporters decided to come together to present alternative histories and storytelling at the iconic site.

Amongst those who attended the Anti-Picnic were Aboriginal activists and supporters Viv Malo, Robbie Thorpe, Marjorie Thorpe and Clare Land. Also present were local residents and community groups, including Friends of Hanging Rock, as well as Macedon Ranges Shire Council Arts and Culture coordinator Robyn Till and Councillor Bill West.

On the day we presented a reading of a satirical play, “How it Goes”, by Elspeth Tilley, author of White Vanishing: Rethinking Australia’s Lost-in-the-Bush Myth. Tilley expressly wrote the play for the Miranda Must Go campaign. The reading was performed by Carissa Lee, Ash Dyer, Ben Hjorth, Catherine Ryan, Amy Spiers and Beth Sometimes.

The play is available to download and Tilley welcomes, indeed encourages, people to use, perform or remix it under the Creative Commons license.

How it Goes, a play by Elspeth Tilley by amyspiers on Scribd

We also ended the day with a lively, open discussion about the campaign and the concerns it raises.

In the video below Aboriginal activist, Robbie Thorpe, explains why campaigns that contest dominant white Australian myths are important.

You can also watch an ABC News story about the event below.

More documentation from the day to come…

Reflections on Miranda Must Go

Yesterday’s Miranda Must Go event was fantastic. We had an anti-picnic at Hanging Rock, read Elspeth Tilley’s satirical play about white vanishing myths and finished with a really fabulous, open discussion about the concerns of the campaign. Two ABC media crews came and we were featured in the ABC News that evening. I am most grateful to everyone who attended, and those who couldn’t but sent us well wishes and support. I am most especially thankful that Aboriginal rights activists, such as Robbie Thorpe and Clare Land, joined us yesterday as it was a real privilege to hear them speak. Also big thanks to Elspeth Tilley for her play, “How It Goes“. Its critique of settler invasion was welcomed by attendees. The picture above is from the reading (note the carving of Miranda in the tree watching over us). More documentation to come.

I just want to acknowledge that over the last few weeks the Miranda Must Go campaign has received some criticism from a diversity of perspectives: the “informed” literary theorists argue that Picnic at Hanging Rock actually draws attention to colonial dispossession via subtext; there are concerned white people (that fail to understand that the campaign’s aim is to acknowledge the effects of colonial dispossession) who have accused the campaign of trying to tell Aboriginal stories that non-Aboriginal people have no right to tell; there are other well-meaning people who fault Miranda Must Go for not telling Aboriginal stories and fixating only on the Aboriginal people who died and dispossessed in the region; also moderate Miranda-fans who argue we should have balance/multiplicity and celebrate both white and Aboriginal stories; white “progressive” Hanging Rock residents who believe the campaign’s aims are too extreme; plus your usual right-wing trolls who reject the fact that Australia was founded on violence and invasion.

I expected much of this criticism and have reflected on it. After listening to a diversity of people speak yesterday, however, and hearing their support for the campaign, my commitment to the aims of Miranda Must Go has only toughened. This campaign is not too extreme. Instead we need thousands more initiatives like it.

It was disturbing to watch Miranda-fans at Hanging Rock in flowing frocks skipping around on stolen Aboriginal land yesterday as we listened to local officials pay lip-service to the importance of Aboriginal stories while maintaining that Miranda should stay. What it highlights is that these white vanishing myths do not only discursive but real violence, shifting attention to white lives, losses and stories, and establishing a convenient and palatable settler attachment to the Australian landscape, whilst obscuring and trivialising Aboriginal peoples’ ongoing losses, struggles and traumas. While white Australia cannot openly confront the violence of settler colonialism or ratify a formal treaty with Aboriginal people and acknowledge their land rights, Miranda and her white vanishing friends really have to go.

If anything it demonstrates that there is so much work to do in every locality in Australia to bring attention to the injustices Aboriginal people have faced, and continue to endure, as a result of colonial invasion. My most sincere wish is that this campaign inspires others to contest the white symbols and monuments in their area and keep trying to alter the dominant narrative.

For more information about the rationale behind the campaign, please read this piece I wrote for VICE: www.vice.com/en_au/article/what-really-happened-at-hanging-rock

Many thanks for your support,

Amy Spiers
(artist, activist and Miranda Must Go campaigner)

Join us on Valentine’s Day

You are cordially invited to the Miranda Must Go Anti-Picnic on Tuesday 14 February 2017, 12.30-4.30pm at Hanging Rock Reserve.

At Hanging Rock a myth of vanishing white schoolgirls is obsessively retold while the actual removal and displacement of Aboriginal people and culture is actively ignored.

Hanging Rock is effectively haunted by a convenient fiction rather than an uncomfortable fact.

The “Miranda Must Go” campaign seeks to challenge the habitual retelling of the Picnic at Hanging Rock story at Hanging Rock and direct attention to the real losses and traumas Aboriginal people have experienced due to European settlement.

2017 marks the 50th anniversary since Joan Lindsay’s novel, Picnic At Hanging Rock, was published and Valentine’s Day is the date when the schoolgirls go missing in the novel. On 14 February, Miranda Must Go supporters will gather to contest the habitual associations with Joan Lindsay’s novel by presenting alternative histories and storytelling at Hanging Rock.

Program:

You can find us on the day based at the Petanque Shelter at Hanging Rock (see map).

12.30-2.30pm: Lunch at Hanging Rock.  Bring things for a picnic – we will have bbq facilities at the Petanque Picnic Shelter. Visit the Hanging Rock Discovery Centre to view a new video artwork by artists Amy Spiers and Zoe Scoglio (view trailer).

2.30-3.00pm: Reading of a satirical play, “How it Goes”, by Elspeth Tilley, author of White Vanishing: Rethinking Australia’s Lost-in-the-Bush Myth. Tilley has expressly written the play for the Miranda Must Go campaign. The reading will be performed by Carissa Lee, Ash Dyer, Ben Hjorth, Catherine Ryan, Amy Spiers and Beth Sometimes.

3.00-4.30pm: Discussion and Q&A. A discussion about Miranda Must Go and the aims of the campaign. The discussion will include representation from local community groups, Macedon Ranges Shire Council and Miranda Must Go supporters, with special guest Aboriginal activist Robbie Thorpe.

RSVP and share the event on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/208574542949012/

Support this event and preorder a campaign t-shirt, sign or poster to collect on the day: https://www.gofundme.com/mirandamustgo

Suggest a speaker or contribute to the day, get in touch: mirandamustgo@gmail.com

#MirandaMustGo in the news

The campaign launched two weeks ago and has been covered by local and national media. Click on links below to find out more about why Miranda should go:

Support the campaign

  • Share. Tell friends about Miranda Must Go and invite them to our event. Use the hashtag #MirandaMustGo.

Save the Date

This year on Tuesday  14 February, 2017 the Miranda Must Go campaign will hold an action and event at Hanging Rock.

It is important that our objection to the white vanishing myth is heard on this day.

2017 marks the 50th anniversary since Joan Lindsay’s Picnic At Hanging Rock was published and 14 February (Valentine’s Day) is the date when the schoolgirls go missing in the novel. It is also a day people traditionally celebrate the book by holding picnics and film screenings at Hanging Rock.

Please save the date! 

Full details will be distributed to subscribers closer to the date.  Join us on Facebook or Twitter or subscribe to our newsletter to stay informed.

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