Distinguished Aboriginal scholar made Honorary Fellow

March 16 / 176

Marcia Langton and Stewart Gill
Marcia Langton and Stewart Gill

Known for her lifelong work in Aboriginal social issues and women’s rights, Professor Marcia Langton of the Bidjara Nation has added another honour to her long list of accolades, being installed as an Honorary Fellow of Emmanuel College at the University of Queensland.

Professor Langton is the Chair of Australian Indigenous Studies in the Centre for Health Equity at the University of Melbourne.

Professor Langton’s Honorary Fellowship, the highest honour the college bestows, was awarded during the college’s Convocation Service, one of the first official events of the new year.  

Emmanuel College Principal Adjunct Professor Stewart Gill said Professor Langton personified the heart of university education.

“It is an honour to add Professor Langton to the prestigious list of honorary fellows at our college, which includes former UQ Vice Chancellors Professor John Hay and Professor Debbie Terry,” he said.

“After the service, Professor Langton spoke to first year students and guests at Emmanuel’s Convocation dinner about the great privilege of a collegiate education at the University of Queensland (UQ). She emphasised it came with a responsibility to give back to the wider community,” he said.

Introducing Professor Langton, Professor Gill quoted from her 2012 Boyer Lectures.

“The role of a public intellectual is not to agree with the paradigm but to be sceptical, to ask questions, refute mistaken beliefs, discuss important ideas and literature, provide accurate information and cogent interpretations of matters.” 

Professor Langton attended UQ in the late 1960s, and was active in the women’s liberation movement throughout the 1970s, highlighting the oppression of black women.

She continued to work for Aboriginal causes and became a key participant in the Wik Land rights negotiations during the late 1990s and has appeared in film and on television portraying strong Aboriginal characters.

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