Having settled on the Australian continent for over 40,000 years and protected by their geographical isolation, the Aborigines develop a social structure and religious system particularly rich and complex, compared to a “relatively simple” economy based on hunting and agriculture, also due to the environmental situation. Even today, ethnologists and mathematicians still wonder about the complexity of their world outlook and their organisation of society and kinship.
The settlement of a British penal colony in Port Jackson (the future city of Sydney) in 1788 marks the beginning of a long history of conflicts, aimed to dispossess the Aborigines of their lands and to annihilate a culture so symbiotically connected to the native land.
In 1992 the Aborigines were recognised the right to claim ownership of the land to which they were bound by an ancestral bond; such a right, though, is basically null, considering the requirement to document an uninterrupted relationship with the territories claimed. Forcibly moved away from the native land of their ancestors and prevented from returning there, today many Aboriginal groups cannot prove this relationship.