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The Yield | Tara June Winch | Book of the Month | December 2020

WOAH!! This book. Wow!

You know how when you are reading you get those little movies in your head? Well this one, i didn't want to end!

The Yield is a heart-wrenching story of dispossession faced by Aboriginal people and is based not too far from where i live, which made it all that more interesting. The Yield goes between times and characters in an effortless manner, sharing not only August's story but also her grandfather Alberts story as he discovers his culture and language which is represented beautifully within these pages.

An interesting addition to the book is the letters from the white mission manager, which provides an insight into life on the mission in the early days and comes into focus near the end of the book.

August becomes a character that you want to fight for, her family is a family that you want to protest with and save their land.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Towards the beginning of the book, Poppy Albert states 'There was a lot to remembering the past, but there is something to forgetting it too'. What do you think about this statement?

  2. On Page 33, it is said 'Although us mob lived on rich land we never became rich' and on page 92 culture is described as the biggest victim in the war against Aboriginal people upon settlement. Can you imagine an Australia where the frontier wars never happened- what does that look like to you? And how could we have avoided culture being the biggest loss/victim?

  3. Often quoted through the book is one of Alberts favourite sayings- 'Nothing is ever terrible all the time, even during the worst time'. Is this a philosophy you could believe? Do you have any similar that help you get through bad times?

  4. The Yield tells of a number of cultural beliefs such as Time Travelers, reincarnation (Jedda as a Brolga), spirits, ceremony etc. Is this something you believe in? Why? Why not?

  5. Albert is writing a Wiradjuri dictionary, and we can read this throughout the book. Do you use any Wiradjuri language in your everyday life? Please share!

  6. The Yield uses the Wiradjuri dictionary a a way for Albert to pass down is knowledge to the younger generations and ultimately saves his family. Do you have any plans to share your story with your family in any meaningful way?


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