Doris Pilkington Garimara
|Doris Pilkington Garimara|
Balfour Downs Station, Western Australia
|Other names||Doris Pilkington|
|Occupation||Indigenous Australian writer and nurse|
Doris Pilkington Garimara AM (born Nugi Garimara in 1937, and also known as Doris Pilkington) is an Australian author. She is best known for her 1996 book Follow the Rabbit-Proof Fence, a story of three Aboriginal girls, among them Pilkington's mother Molly Craig, who escaped from the Moore River Native Settlement in Western Australia and travelled for nine weeks to return to their family.
Pilkington was born at Balfour Downs Station, near the north Western Australian settlement of Jigalong. Her mother, Molly, named her Nugi Garimara, but she was called Doris after Molly's employer at the station, Mary Dunnet, who thought Nugi was "a stupid name". As her birth was unregistered, her birth date was recorded as 1 July 1937 by the Department of Native Affairs. She was taken from her mother to be raised at the Moore River mission when she was three and a half years old. Her sister, Annabelle, was also taken when she was 3 years old, but has not acknowledged Craig or Pilkington since she was abducted.
Follow the Rabbit-Proof Fence is considered a powerful example of the mistreatments endured by the Stolen Generation. Her follow-up book, Under the Wintamarra Tree, details her own escape from Moore River. "Home to Mother" is her childrens edition of "Follow the Rabbit Proof Fence". In the four books, Caprice, a Stockman's Daughter, Follow the Rabbit-proof Fence "Home to Mother" and Under the Wintamarra Tree Pilkington was to document three generations of women in her family. The book was made into an internationally successful film in 2002, directed by Phillip Noyce.
Pilkington was appointed co-patron of Australia’s State and Federal Sorry Day committee’s Journey of Healing in 2002.
In May 2008 she was awarded the $50,000 Red Ochre Award which is made to an indigenous artist for their outstanding, lifelong contribution to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts at home and abroad.
- Caprice, A Stockman's Daughter, (UQP, 1991)
- Follow the Rabbit-Proof Fence, (UQP, 2002)
- Under the Wintamarra Tree, (UQP, 2002)
- Home to Mother, (UQP, 2006) illustrated by Janice Lyndon
- "Pilkington, Doris )". Australian Women Biographical entry. Retrieved 15 July 2007.
- Stephens, Tony: All tracks lead to Jigalong, The Sydney Morning Herald, 7 December 2002.
- "Daughter dies with her story still incomplete". The Sydney Morning Herald. 15 January 2004. Retrieved 15 July 2007.
- "Profile: Doris Pilkington". Arts in Australia. Retrieved 15 July 2007.
- "Pot of gold at the end of the Rabbit-Proof Fence for Doris Pilkington Garimara AM.". Australia Council. Retrieved 29 May 2008.
- ABC Australia biography
- European Network for Indigenous Australian Rights article
- Intermix Positive Contribution Award
- Daughter dies with her story still incomplete, by Tony Stephens The Sydney Morning Herald, 15 January 2004
- Leaping The Fence Of Australia's Past - Review of Rabbit-proof Fence (film) Film Inside Out, accessed 15 July 2007