A young Australian Aborigine woman can travel through space via the hand signs painted on rock walls in the outback. A young Welsh [from Wales] woman is jealous of this power and tries to steal it. It was a paperback and very compelling story. I read it more than 20 years ago, I don't remember the cover. Two interesting characters in the story were a partnership of two old women (one black) who were most certainly crazy - but once they had become capable of reading the generalized mind (Brain One) they saw themselves as others see them and it was too much. They committed suicide together (sad).

  • Hi, welcome to the site. When did you read this book, and when do you think it was published? Also, do you recall any details regarding the cover? Sep 18 at 9:41
  • 2
    Welsh as in from Wales or from New South Wales?
    – Valorum
    Sep 18 at 10:24
  • You could improve this question by going through the checklists here and editing in any relevant info you can think to add.
    – Valorum
    Sep 18 at 10:36
  • 1
    Is this connected to your other question about "Brain One"? Sep 19 at 9:10
  • Have not read it, but check out Walkabout Woman by Michaela Roessner.
    – mkennedy
    Sep 19 at 18:34

Like @mkennedy in the comments, I believe the book you are looking for is "Walkabout Woman", the first novel of Michaela Roessner, published in 1988.

The details you give relate to part II of the book. The protagonist is an aboriginal woman named Raba ("kangaroo ears"), and in this part she has left her aboriginal life in the bush, and is working as a literature professor in an Australian university. She meets a student, Diana Nemane, who is indeed Welsh, and who renames herself Gwyneth to reaffirm her roots to her Welsh ancestors. Gwyneth is a witch, and Raba is a powerful user of aboriginal magic, and at first they hit it off, comparing how Christianity and white culture has displaced/destroyed older traditions and folk magic.

Raba is able to "dream walk', a process called badundjari, by painting a picture of herself and then "walking" into it, sending her spirit vast distances away while her physical body remains behind as an empty husk. Under Gwyneth's encouragement Raba's powers grow and she realises her destiny is to return to the Dreamtime and let the world renew itself. Gwyneth begs to go with her, and the two of them fall out when Raba refuses to take her.

The final part of the question though, about the two old women who commit suicide and the generalized mind, does not seem to be related to this book though. I wonder if it was attached to the original question by mistake?

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