In Australia, limited data establish or define the relationship between health, wellbeing and culture and the mechanisms through which Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural determinants impact health and wellbeing. There is increasing attention on the relationship between culture, health and wellbeing in this population. the authors conducted this literature review as preliminary work for the Mayi Kuwayu Study—Mayi Kuwayu broadly means “to follow Aboriginal people over a long time” in Ngiyampaa language (language of the Wongaibon people of New South Wales, Australia). The aim was to help us understand the cultural factors that are important to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and how these factors relate to health and wellbeing. The authors examined the Australian literature, as well as literature from countries that have experienced colonisation events similar to those of Australia— primarily Aotearoa (New Zealand), Canada and the United States.

Author Minette Salmon, Kate Doery, Phyll Dance, Jan Chapman, Ruth Gilbert, Rob Williams & Ray Lovett.
Type Publications
Defining the Indefinable: Descriptors of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ cultures and their links to health and wellbeing
Download PDF
( 5.6 MB )

Acknowledgement of Country

We acknowledge the traditional owners of the land across Australia and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website may contain images, voices and names of deceased persons.