Topic 8: Australia’s Social and Cultural History in the Post-War Period
This topic offers students an opportunity to learn about some major social and cultural trends of the post-war period, within the 1950's, and to appreciate the role they have played in shaping the present.
Inquiry question. One annotated visual source for each topic
Due week _
  1. What have been the major social and cultural features of the 1950's?
You will investigate:
This is what you will learn
Australia after WW2 1945 to 2000
    1. The impact of changing technology on everyday life in post-war Australia:
    1. outline the impact of the main technological changeson everyday life after WW2 in Australia, based on a selection of historical sources
The state of technology, food, transportation and health in 1950's Australia.
Pasted from <http://www.bookrags.com/essay-2005/4/27/172726/044>
1950's Study
    1. The social and cultural features of 1950's including:
      1. Describe the fashions and dance styles you can see in the clip of Six O’Clock Rock.
Pasted from <http://dl.screenaustralia.gov.au/module/169/>
    1. describe the main social and cultural features of the 1950's
    2. List the main forms of entertainment that were popular in Australia in the 1950s.
Pasted from <http://dl.screenaustralia.gov.au/module/177/>
    1. Explain the reasons why the introduction of television was delayed in Australia.
Pasted from <http://dl.screenaustralia.gov.au/module/160/>
British Monarch QE11 visits Australia 1954
Australian Timeline
1950's timeline
    1. outline the main influences of Britain or the USA on Australian popular culture in the 1950's
Science/CSIRO
TV broadcasting
    1. assess the impact of the 1950's in shaping Australian identity





I'd like to keep improving these learning resources. Please tell me if the link is dead or blocked at school.

Also, share your suggestions and any great sites you find so all students can benefit.

Check out Mrs Fealy's great Year 10 resources here

1950's and 1960's - Topics in Australian History

Immigration - a timeline. Federation 1901 to 1968


Post-war migration 1945 to 2000

NSW Migration Heritage Centre

Objects Through Time
The first Aboriginal people arrived on the northwest coast of Australia between 65,000 and 40,000 years ago. The archaeological evidence suggests that Aboriginal people traded with Macassans and the peoples of southern Java for thousands of years. Aboriginal people eventually populated the entire continent of Australia constantly hunting the birds, fish and animals and taking advantage of the land’s resources. That was until the coming of Europeans in the 1600’s.

Packing To Leave. Saris,Suits and Spices. Migration Stories from South Asia to Sydney.

Belongings Today, four out of every ten people in New South Wales are either migrants, or the children of migrants. Most would have arrived in the decades immediately after the Second World War when the Australian Government actively pursued a policy of 'populate or perish'.
Belongings tells the stories of some of these people through personal mementos, photographs and memories. Some are treasured objects brought from the 'old country'; others are souvenirs of the journey out; or keepsakes from their first home or job. All help us understand how migration changed their lives and - through the cultures and traditions they brought with them - the lives of all Australians forever.

Gold and Silver 'Gold and Silver' looks at peoples changing relationships with environments in Vietnam and Australia through four personal accounts of refugees and migrants from Vietnam. Here, you can explore people's attachment to homeland and nature before leaving, ongoing connections to homeland and revisiting, stories of escape and moving, as well as making new homes and attachments in Sydney's south west.

These histories show us how cultural knowledge shapes the ways Vietnamese Australians know places and make places home over their lifetimes - whether it's the Perfume River of Hue or the Georges River parks like Chipping Norton in Sydney.

Fear of Communism and the Menzies Era 1949 to 1966

SEATO 1954
Korean War 1950 to 1953

Menzies Bill to Ban the Communist party 1950 cartoon source
Petrov Affair 1954
Menzies Era - Popular Culture from 1949 to 1972
Menzies Virtual Museum
Prime Ministers and their policies

Click here to view these 1960's historical sources.

An overview of the 1960's in Australia


Changing Aboriginal Rights and Freedoms

Government Fact Sheets - good introduction to many issues

Collaborating for Indigenous Rights 1957-1973 The fight for civil and land rights, timeline 1930's to 1970's

1965 Freedom Ride Charles Perkins

Wave Hill Walkout 1966
The issue of Aboriginal land rights was first brought to national attention in 1966, when 200 Gurindji stockmen, house servants and their families who worked at Wave Hill, walked off this cattle station demanding better pay and conditions.
video clip From Little Things Big things Grow

Gurindji Blues My name is Vincent Lingiari, came from Daruragu, Wattie Creek station.
That means that I came down here to ask all these fella here about the land rights. What I got story from my old father or grandfather that land belongs to me, belongs to Aboriginal men before the horses and the cattle come over on that land where I am sitting now. That is what I have been keeping on my mind and I still got it on my mind. That is all the words I can tell you.


The Wave Hill walk-off was well supported and made headlines all over Australia. While the initial strike was about wages and living conditions it soon spread to include the more fundamental issue about their traditional lands. The Wave Hill walk-off had morphed into a land claim.
See Australia's first land claim for more detailed information.
Government Fact Sheet National Archives link
Websites with further resources


1967 Referendum

Interactive site on the Referendum of 1967 What do they tell you about Australian attitudes?


1957 to 1967 Lead up To the Referendum

"Beatlemania" cartoon resource June 1964

John Frith - 40years as a political cartoonist

A Family Visits (Old) Parliament House Canberra 1965. (Note the source evidence of the era and the weather)

Vietnam War Era

Australia & the Vietnam War Era Centre for learning Innovation (Cli)
Australia and the Vietnam war - Department of Veterans affairs Great site with many resources

Prime Minister Robert Menzies announced combat troops would be sent to Vietnam.

Vietnam Veterans - Resources & Timeline of events

Battle of Long Tan 18th August 1966

The Dustoff - real video stories of medical evacuations in war

National Service 1964 to 1972 analyse the issues more deeply

For Visual Learners - National Photo Archives

Battle of Long Tan - If you like a deep understanding of military tactics this Powerpoint is for you.

Vietnam War - "I Was Only 19" - A Walk in the Light Green.

Napalm bombing in Vietnam. original newsreel footage

Whitlam Dismissal 1975

Long Way to the Top - Stories of Australian Rock n Roll

The Stolen Generations


DO NOT CLICK - THIS SITE IS US