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Shell necklaces have assumed a particular cultural significance linked to Tasmania as 'place', its 'placedness', the place's colonial histories, sometime somewhat Gothic histories, and the ways palawa (Tasmanian Aboriginal) culture interfaces with and challenges all this. Curiously, it is when one is confronted with, or one confronts, a palawa maireener necklace, or a colonial mimic once known as a "Hobart Necklace", the spectrum of Tasmania's layered colonial histories begins to reveal itself.
Tasmanians, are quite inclined to peel back the layers of storytelling, and histories, in an attempt to make sense of their place in the world – and their Tasmanianess. Each new year the people of Low Head, at the mouth of the Tamar, gather together for kind of New Year celebration that includes the presentation of papers. In 2010 Ray Norman was invited to present a paper .... click here to link to his paper Maireener Musings