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Video Wagalak Sisters

TLF ID M021482

The Wagalak Sisters are creation sisters. In this telling of the story, there are two sisters, but there could have been three, four or more. The sisters carry their power in their dilly bags. When they walk, they use the contents of their dilly bags to create the landscape. In their hands, the landscape that is created is beautiful and lush. The sisters are the keepers and teachers of the law, but this changes when they are distracted by the voices of nearby men. When the sisters seek out the men, they forget about their dilly bags. While the sisters are distracted, the men raid their dilly bags, stealing their wisdom and power. Sometime later, the elder sister washes herself and her newborn baby in the river. The scent of the mother and baby attracts the dingo, whatu, which transforms into a rainbow serpent and eats the Wagalaks and their baby. One reading of this final scene is that, due to the sisters' loss of control over their power, nature itself turned against them. The story also carries messages for women about care of mothers and newborns.

Educational details

Year level

4; 5; 6; 7; 8

Learning area
  • Humanities and social sciences

Other details

  • Contributor
  • Name: Australian Broadcasting Corporation
  • Organization: Australian Broadcasting Corporation
  • Description: Creator
  • URL:
  • Name: Education Services Australia
  • Organization: Education Services Australia
  • Description: Data manager
  • Address: VIC, AUSTRALIA
  • URL:
  • Publisher
  • Name: Australian Broadcasting Corporation
  • Organization: Australian Broadcasting Corporation
  • Description: Publisher
  • URL:
  • Resource metadata contributed by
  • Name: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Organisation: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Address: AUSTRALIA
  • URL:
Access profile
  • Generic
Learning Resource Type
  • Video
  • Metadata © Australian Broadcasting Corporation and Education Services Australia Ltd 2012 (except where otherwise indicated). Digital content © Australian Broadcasting Corporation 2012 (except where otherwise indicated).