Black Diggers

Black Diggers


Tom Wright

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Mick Character Analysis

Another Aboriginal soldier. Early on, he meets four Trinidadians in Ypres and beats them up after they call him an “Australian Nigger.” Later he kills a number of Germans and takes pride in his “warrior blood.” Back in Australia, he learns that the Soldier Settlement Commission is giving his family’s land away, even though his family was forced onto that land when settlers kicked them off their ancestral land. Meanwhile, he has no chance of getting a settlement through the Commission.

Mick Quotes in Black Diggers

The Black Diggers quotes below are all either spoken by Mick or refer to Mick . For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Australian Nationhood and Indigenous Dispossession Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Playlab edition of Black Diggers published in 2015.
Act One Quotes

Seriously, this has gone for years and it could go for years. We lose a few mates, they lose a few, the whistle blows, we gain another cricket pitch worth of Belgium, the horn blows, they chase us out. But most of the time we sit here and we sing our songs. And they sit over there and sing theirs. And everyone, everyone hates the whole bloody stunt.

Related Characters: Ern (speaker), Archie, Mick , Stan
Page Number: 42
Explanation and Analysis:
Act Two Quotes

For you the war’s over. What’s starting to dawn on me is that, for us, it’s never going to end.

Related Characters: Mick (speaker)
Page Number: 75
Explanation and Analysis:

You listen to me and you listen to me nice and close. I don’t give a rat’s arse where you’ve been and what you’ve done. I don’t give a fuck what happened on the other side of the world. I don’t care for your airs and graces. As far as I’m concerned you’re still the boy who used to shut his lip and do as he was told. Ever since you came home you’ve been the worst kind of black, an uppity one. I suggest you get on with the job at hand and stop being a troublemaker. Or things might get tough for people you care about. Jesus, now you’ve gone and got me angry. Who put these bloody ideas in your head?

Related Characters: Overseer at Bertha Downs Cattle Ranch (speaker), Archie, Mick
Page Number: 76
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Black Diggers LitChart as a printable PDF.
Black Diggers PDF

Mick Character Timeline in Black Diggers

The timeline below shows where the character Mick appears in Black Diggers. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act One
Racism Theme Icon
At Ypres in 1917, “Four West Indian ammunition haulers go past” and aboriginal soldier Mick wonders who they might be. The other soldiers joke that he “thought [he was] the... (full context)
War, Violence, and Shell Shock Theme Icon
In a trench on the outskirts of a battlefield in 1917, Mick, Archie, Ern, and Stan play “I spy” to pass the time. Ern notes that they... (full context)
War, Violence, and Shell Shock Theme Icon
Back at the battle of Pozieres, Mick approaches five surrendering Germans but kills them all when one “ducks to pick something up.”... (full context)
Act Two
Racism Theme Icon
In 1919, getting off their ship back home in Australia, Mick jokes that “they really rolled out the red carpet” but Archie tells him to take... (full context)
Australian Nationhood and Indigenous Dispossession Theme Icon
Racism Theme Icon
Mick Dempsey asks if he has a right to some of this land, which his father,... (full context)
Australian Nationhood and Indigenous Dispossession Theme Icon
Mick gives a speech, recalling his four years in the war, watching his friends die, and... (full context)