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PANDANUS MAT FRINGE a research blog

Welcome

Hello! Welcome to the Pandanus Mat Fringe research blog inspired by the project To Be Born Upon a Pandanus Mat: Yothuw gayatha dhäwal’ guyaŋa’ nharaw.  It shares the project’s ebbs and flows, alongside First Nations and Western knowledge perspectives in research, childbirth and wellbeing. 

 

Watch the project video

 

Photo credits: Pat Josse; Sarah Ireland.  

About

I am Associate Professor Sarah Ireland and I am a non-Indigenous researcher working on the ambitious multiagency project To Be Born Upon a Pandanus Mat: Yothuw gayatha dhäwal’ guyaŋa’ nharaw. With leadership from Warramiri scholar Professor Elaine Ḻäwurrpa Maypilama, Njikena Jawuru scholar Professor Yvette Roe, and non-Indigenous scholars Professor Sue Kildea and Associate Professor Yu Gao, our project is working in partnership with stakeholders to establish and evaluate Australia’s ‘Birthing on Country’ very remote, demonstration site in Galiwin’ku, Elcho Island, Arnhem Land, Australia.

 

The Pandanus Mat Fringe is not just a blog, it's a conceptual space.

The Pandanus Mat Fringe Blog serves dual purpose: to update stakeholders on this unique project, but also provide a conceptual space to explore the diverse perspectives of First Nations and Western knowledge in the realms of research, childbirth, and overall wellbeing.

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Photo credit: Pat Josse: Associate Professor Sarah Ireland & Professor Elaine Ḻäwurrpa Maypilama preparing pandanus for weaving.

The blog’s name is an important acknowledgment of our intercultural collaboration values and principles. At the core of our project methodology lies a Pandanus mat, representing a cultural metaphor wherein Yolŋu weave First Nations and Western knowledge into a resilient and aesthetically beautiful foundation for their birthing women and babies. As a non-Yolŋu woman working in partnership with Yolŋu on their sovereign country, I recognise that it is not my place to be choosing the knowledges or weaving patterns in the mat. Instead, I am committed to honouring and amplifying Yolŋu perspectives while reflecting and facilitating Yolŋu access to Western knowledge. Thus, my observations and insights shared in the blog emerge only from the fringe of the pandanus mat.

Thus, my observations and insights shared in the blog emerge only from the fringe of the pandanus mat.

I invite you to join us on an enriching journey, exploring the intersections of tradition and innovation, First Nations and Western wisdom, as we work towards fostering holistic and culturally sensitive approaches to reproductive health care, childbirth and research in Australia. Enjoy sharing in our project's unfolding narrative!

 

Nhäma yalala- see you later!

 

Sarah

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