NAIDOC Week 2018

NAIDOC 2018 Theme.

NAIDOC Week celebrations are held across Australia each July to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. NAIDOC is celebrated not only in Indigenous communities, but by Australians from all walks of life. The week is a great opportunity to participate in a range of activities and to support your local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community. NAIDOC Week 2018 will celebrate the invaluable contributions that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women have made – and continue to make – to our communities, our families, our rich history and to our nation.

NAIDOC Week 2018 Poster.

Under the theme – Because of Her, We Can! – NAIDOC Week 2018 will celebrate the many roles Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women have played – and continue to play – at the community, local, state and national levels. As leaders, trailblazers, politicians, activists and social change advocates, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women fought and continue to fight, for justice, equal rights, our rights to country, for law and justice, access to education, employment and to maintain and celebrate our culture, language, music and art. These themes are highlighted by Bigambul artist Cheryl Moggs, who designed this year’s poster tarmunggie – woman.

Brisbane languages wordlist.

They continue to influence as doctors, lawyers, teachers, electricians, chefs, nurses, architects, rangers, emergency and defence personnel, writers, volunteers, chief executive officers, actors, singer songwriters, journalists, entrepreneurs, media personalities, board members, accountants, academics, sporting icons and Olympians, the list goes on.

Cairns languages wordlist.

NAIDOC Week 2018 celebrates all the women in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures – State Library encourages you to find out local language words for the women in your community. Words include woman, mother, grandmother, aunt, sister, daughter and so on.

Torres Strait Islander language wordlist.

The above images are a selection of words relating to the NAIDOC theme and identify different female terms from a number of Queensland languages; currently State Library is compiling resource lists of words to assist schools and community groups. As well as feature resource lists for Brisbane, Cairns and the Torres Strait, there will be a compilation of words from many of Queensland’s 100+ Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages.

Extract # 1: Queensland languages wordlist.

These lists will be made available on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Languages webpages. State Library encourages people to work with their community to identify local words. In addition, there may be regional resources such as Language Centres, Community Organisations or Indigenous Knowledge Centres (IKCs).

Extract # 2: Queensland languages wordlist.

State Library’s Indigenous Languages Project invites you to celebrate NAIDOC Week 2018 and learn more about Queensland’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and their stories. For further details on NAIDOC Week 2018, including teaching resources, posters, etc. please visit the NAIDOC website.


Desmond Crump

Indigenous Languages Coordinator, State Library of Queensland.

Note: Additional text and information has been sourced from the NAIDOC Website in the compilation of this blog post.


State Library of Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Languages webpages

State Library of Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Language webpages – wordlists


References and Further Reading

There are many historical texts and other references within the State Library Collections to identify language words; the following items may be a good starting point.

Allan, J. and Lane, J. (2001) The language of the Wangerriburra and neighbouring groups in the Yugambeh region. Kombumerri Aboriginal Corporation for Culture: Beenleigh. P 499.15 all

Barlow, H. (1865) Harriet Barlow Manuscript. [Provides the basis for her work “Aboriginal Vocabularies of Queensland”.] OM91-69.

Bell, J. (1994) Dictionary of the Gubbi-Gubbi and Butchulla languages, compiled with the assistance of Amanda Seed. Jeannie Bell: Brisbane. G 499.15321 1994

Breen, J.G. (1990) Salvage Studies of Western Queensland Aboriginal Languages. Australia Pacific Linguistics Canberra. J 499.15 bre

Condamine Alliance (2013) Languages of the Condamine: Schools Activity Guide. Condamine Alliance: Toowoomba. P 499.9915 LAN [Available online:]

Curr, E. M. (1887) The Australian Race: its origins, languages, customs, place of landing in Australia and the routes by which it spread itself over that continent. John Ferres Government Printer: Melbourne. RBF 572.994 cur

Desert Channels Queensland (2013) Kalkadoon Pictorial Dictionary. Desert Channels Queensland: Longreach. JUVQ 499.9915 KAL

Desert Channels Queensland (2013) Pitta Pitta Pictorial Dictionary. Desert Channels Queensland: Longreach. JUVQ 499.9915 PIT

Desert Channels Queensland (2013) Waluwarra Pictorial Dictionary. Desert Channels Queensland: Longreach. JUVQ 499.9915 WAL

Desert Channels Queensland (2013) Koa Pictorial Dictionary. Desert Channels Queensland: Longreach. JUVQ 499.9915 KOA

Desert Channels Queensland (2013) Yulluna Pictorial Dictionary. Desert Channels Queensland: Longreach. JUVQ 499.9915 YUL

Dixon, R. M. W. (1991) Words of our country: stories, place names and vocabulary in Yidiny, the Aboriginal language of the Cairns-Yarrabah region. St Lucia, Qld: University of Queensland Press. G 499.15 1991

Edwards, R. (Ed) (2001) Dictionary of Torres Strait languages. Rams Skull Press: Sydney. Q 499.1503 RAY

Eipper, C. (2007) German Mission to the Aborigines at Moreton Bay, 1841. Archive CD Books. QCFS 266.02343094 2007

Helon, G. (1994) The English-Goreng Goreng-English dictionary. Gurang Land Council: Bundaberg. G 499.15 1994

Holmer, N. (1983) Linguistic Survey of South-Eastern Queensland. Australian National University: Canberra. J 499.15 HOL

Kite, S. and Wurm, S. (2004) The Duungidjawu language of southeast Queensland: grammar, texts and vocabulary: Pacific Linguistics 553. Pacific Linguistics: Canberra. J 499.15 KIT

Mathew, J. (1910) Two representative tribes of Queensland: with an inquiry concerning the origin of the Australian race. T Fisher Unwin: London. J 306.0899915 MAT

Meston, A. (undated) Archibald Meston Papers Undated. OM64-17

Mushin, I. (2012) A Grammar of (Western) Garrwa. De Gruyter: Boston. J 499.15 MUS

Sharpe, M. (2005) Grammar and texts of the Yugambeh-Bundjalung dialect chain in Eastern Australia. Lincom: Munich. Q 499.15 sha

Thancoupie (2007) Thanakupi’s guide to language and culture: a Thaynakwith dictionary. Q 305.899 THA

Wafer, J. and Lissarrague, A. (2008) A handbook of Aboriginal languages of New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory. Muurrbay Aboriginal Language and culture Cooperative: Nambucca Heads, NSW. J 499.15 WAF

Watson, F. J. (1944) “Vocabularies of four representative tribes of South Eastern Queensland”; supplement to the Journal of the Royal Geographical Society of Australasia (Queensland), No. 34, Vol XLVIII. REFJ 499.15 wat