Dean Mobbs - Confirmation of Candidature

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Presenter:  Dean Mobbs, Doctor of Philosophy College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society Charles Darwin University

Date: Jan 30, 2020

Time: 10:00am to 11:00am

Contact person:  Office of Research & Innovation (ORI), Charles Darwin University
T: 08 8946 6548

Location:  Yellow 1.2.48 (Savanna Room), Casuarina Campus, Charles Darwin University

The Straw Dog Ordinance: Love as Law – Marriage as Metaphor: Welfare Ordinances and Discrimination in Australia 1955 – 1965

Dean Mobbs
Doctor of Philosophy
College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society
Charles Darwin University

Dean Mobbs is an artist and a writer based in Bathurst NSW. A former chef and a former schoolteacher, he operates an art gallery in Keppel St, Bathurst, featuring his original artworks. He holds not only a teaching degree in Primary Education with Honours from Charles Sturt University, but also a Bachelor's Degree in Creative Arts and a Masters of Philosophy in Creative Writing from The University of Newcastle. Dean has published two novels. The Expressionist (2015) and Dancing on a Pin (2017). His first novel The Expressionist has received a Silver Medal for Best Regional Fiction in the Independent Publishers Book Awards for 2016. Dean is informed by a passionate desire to create, research and share a sense of hope, confidence and empowered knowledge for the productive betterment of society. As a mentor, collaborator, and teacher, Dean Mobbs and his gallery have developed a close link to universities, businesses, charities, and sporting clubs. Dean Mobbs Gallery also provides a variety of scholarships throughout New South Wales.

What does it mean to love someone? What role does culture play in loving another person? Mary ‘Gladys’ Namagu and Michael ‘Mick’ Daly cohabitated near Katherine in the Daly River region of Northern Territory, Australia during the 1950s and the 1960s. The couple were connected in Malak-Malak country by human love. Gladys Namagu was an Indigenous, ward of the state. Mick Daly was a hardened, white drover. In 1959, the couple challenged the decision of the Director after being denied the right to marry under the Northern Territory Welfare Ordinance Act of 1953. The collective knowledge in the love story of Gladys and Mick has largely gone ignored by writers of fiction. I hope to redress this oversight. I want to highlight the contributions of this couple to changes in both the Australian Welfare Ordinances and the Australian Marriage Laws. I want to use the genre of Australian, historical fiction to dramatize a postcolonial relationship between an Australian Indigenous person and an Australian non-Indigenous person. I plan to conduct my research by using an Indigenous Methodology — one that incorporates collective storytelling and relational accountability. I plan to investigate concepts of intercultural connection, using my research to explore a historically documented, intercultural relationship. I hope to unveil ‘a relational truth’ about the rules that have governed loving relationships in the 1950s and the 1960s.