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Davidson I, Roberts D. 14000 BP On Being Alone: The Isolation of the Tasmanians. 2008.
Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://e-publications.une.edu.au/1959.11/4240
14000 BP On Being Alone: The Isolation of the Tasmanians
Tasmania became an island separate from the rest of Australia around 14 000 years ago, during the final warming phase of the Pleistocene Ice Ages. As global temperatures increased towards modern levels and sea levels rose because of the melting ice caps, Australia's shorelines changed, closing the land bridge between Tasmania and the continent, and later that between Australia and New Guinea. From that time, Tasmania's cultures developed in isolation - an extreme case, some would say, of the more general isolation of Australian cultures, though people hardly feel deprived of contact when they know nothing of anywhere beyond the connections of their daily lives. Tasmanians and those from what is now the mainland turned their backs on each other and lived without knowledge of the other for 14 000 years. Now, by virtue of the creation of a single nation through processes of colonisation and federation, the communities on each side of Bass Strait are both identified as Aborigines, as a consequence of not being non-Aboriginal people of Australia.