In My Blood It Runs – Book Review and Educational Resources
When Dujuan Hoosan first hit our screens in 2019 with the award-winning documentary In My Blood It Runs, his story both shocked and delighted audiences. The newly-released book of the same name retells Arrernte and Garawa boy Dujuan’s story, this time through the power of written storytelling and art. With beautiful illustrations by 2022 Archibald Prize winner Blak Douglas, we are immersed once again in 10-year-old Dujuan’s strong connection to family, as well as the prejudice he faces from society and the education system. He finds himself disengaged from school, receiving report cards based on a flawed curriculum that fails to recognise his knowledge of healing, culture, Country and his grasp of three languages. We see Dujuan start to fall under the ever-watchful eye of the police, with warnings from those in power of his supposed inevitable pathway to juvenile detention. However, this story is one of hope and self-determination, which shows the power and strength of culture and language in the life of a young boy who thrives as he heads bush to be with his family on ancestral lands.
Speaking about writing the book with his nannas, Margaret Anderson and Carol Turner Dujuan says, ‘I wrote this book as something for you to read to your children as a bedtime story. I wrote it for you to read on long road trips to make sure you don’t get bored. I wrote it for people who don’t understand TV very well, and just want to look at pictures and read instead.
‘It could be a story to read to your families and friends around the fire out bush. I want to make young people feel like they were there with me when I was making the movie. I want to show the world how us young Aboriginal kids live and are treated on the streets in Australia.’
This is a powerful book and one to share with all generations.
The accompanying education resources for the In My Blood It Runs publication, to be released in early 2024, have been developed by Keren Schlezinger with support from Nina Ross from Reconciliation Australia.
Reconciliation Australia is a proud Education Partner for In My Blood It Runs. The Narragunnawali online professional learning resource developed for the film is another great resource when using the film and/or book in your teaching and learning activities.
In My Blood It Runs
Dujuan Hoosan, Margaret Anderson and Carol Turner