Barry talks about identity and culture and their impact on work and training (2:02)

I believe they’re lost without it, because unless you know where you’re coming from, isn’t that the whole idea of Aboriginal people is a creative – creation of the colonising process of re-establishing who people are.  But if they start to realise that they’re actually a Wiradjuri person or a Murrinh-Patha person or whatever, when they go into university, then their whole sense of – the base where they’re coming from seems to come more established. 

The interesting thing about Wadeye, which is where I’m presenting doing the training now, is that there’s no need to do that.  This place is totally immersed in their cultural base but they don’t realise how strong that can be in their intentions about what they want to do.  But then again it’s a very different experience here at Wadeye, because the majority of people I’ve spoken to don’t want to leave the place so they’re not interested in the bigger fields, the higher wages or the better opportunities or anything else.  So they don’t want to train up to be an art gallery manager because they really don’t want to leave here.  So unless there’s an art gallery here, then there’s no future employment in that sort of training that would serve their purpose, so... And that’s one of the dilemmas because there is not a lot of work opportunities here so the whole idea of training to me needs to be balanced around the idea of it is about them individuals becoming better themselves, who they are rather than better to qualify to be somewhere else or to work somewhere else.  I still see that comes back to sense of identity again, and people who have a strong sense of identity I think tend to do any job or tend to do any studies.  It’s about their own – I don’t know – self image that perpetuates their own learning process.