Flourishing in Country: An Examination of Well-Being in Australian YA Fiction
This article is the result of a collaboration between two academics—one Indigenous and one non-Indigenous—to investigate the representation of Indigeneity in two contemporary YA novels. Melissa Lucashenko’s killing Darcy is narrated by multiple Indigenous and non-Indigenous characters, whereas Clare Atkins’s Nona and Me is told from the perspective of a white character and explores her relationship with an Indigenous community. Cultural identity forms a significant part of well-being, and this article investigates versions of sufficient well-being. It explores how the novels represent flourishing subjects—both Indigenous and non-Indigenous—in the context of Australia as it struggles to come to terms with its colonial past and demonstrates how cognitive mapping replaces damaging colonial assumptions about Indigenous Peoples with a model of overcoming.