Noongar Mambara Bakitj
FORMAT: Paperback
EXTENT: 44 pages
SIZE: 225 x 275 mm
ISBN: 9781742582955
CATEGORY: Anthony (Troy) Roberts, Art, Photography and Design, Indigenous, Kim Scott, Wirlomin Noongar Language and Stories Project,

Noongar Mambara Bakitj


Kim Scott, Lomas Roberts and the Wirlomin Noongar Language and Stories Project with artwork by Geoffrey Woods and Anthony Roberts

A young man follows a kangaroo track deep into the old people’s country. Along the way he meets some spirit creatures (‘mambara’) who allow him to go on. But after he has hunted down the kangaroo, one mambara is angry and demands a fight (‘bakitj’). All day they fight, until the Noongar discovers he is a magic person and defeats the mambara.

Noongar Mambara Bakitj is inspired by a story Bob Roberts and Freddie Winmer told the American linguist Gerhardt Laves at Albany, Western Australia, around 1931 and has been workshopped in a series of community meetings, which included some of the contemporary family of both Bob Roberts and Freddie Winmer. This story is told in old Noongar, contemporary Noongar and English.

Read more about MamangDwoort Baal Kaat and Yira Boornak Nyininy – the other books in this series.

To download a reading of this story, or for instructions on how to purchase a CD containing the reading, go to:


Shortlisted – 2012 APA Book Design Awards (Best Designed Children’s Series)


Book extract

High-res cover image

Media release


Praise for Noongar Mambara Bakitj:

Noongar Mambara Bakitj and Mamang are two wonderful examples of how elements of a threatened Indigenous culture can be recorded…Both books are brilliantly illustrated in a simple, naïve style. With the national curriculum focusing on Indigenous culture, these books will find homes in many school libraries, but I hope they will be enjoyed by adults and children alike for the wonderful stories that they are. ★★★★



Presented in both Noongar and English, this book will inspire and delight all ages.