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About the Video Clip:

Video Clip Synopsis:
In a typical 60s family a mother works to get dinner ready as the children come home after school. After Dad arrives home from work in the Holden, Mum serves traditional roast lamb and three vegetables.

1min 32sec

Family Life in Geelong is an excerpt from the film Life in Australia: Geelong (22mins), an episode of the Life in Australia Series (12 x 22 mins), produced in 1966.

Life in Australia: Geelong: Scenes of life and recreation in Geelong Victoria without commentary. The film was made to encourage immigration and had a theatrical release. It shows typical scenes from family life in the 60s in Geelong, Victoria.

Life in Australia Series: The Life in Australia Series visits state capitals and regional centres around the nation to give a picture of life in Australia in the mid 1960s. Part travelogue, it tours streets, buildings and points of interest around the towns, but the emphasis is really on providing a visual record of “typical” daily life, from work and education to home and recreation.

Life in Australia Series is a National Film Board Production. Produced by the Commonwealth Film Unit.

Study Module

Curriculum Focus: English
Year: 7-8
Theme: Gender & Work

Key Concepts

Family; Gender roles; Community; Identity; Stereotypes; Suburbia; Propaganda

Curriculum Applicability Notes

ACT:Everyday texts – Language: Contextual understanding
NSW:(2003 Syllabus) Stage 4 Outcome 4, Outcome 10
NT:R/V 4.1 – 4.3
Qld:Cu 5.2
SA:Texts and contexts 4.3
Tas:Communicating – Being literate, Standard 4
Vic:Reading – Texts 5.7
WA:Understanding Language
Attitudes, values and beliefs

Context / Background Information

Australia has long been one of the most highly urbanised nations in the world.

Part of this urbanisation is the existence of major rural centres.

Geelong is Victoria’s second largest city. Located about an hour’s drive from Melbourne, it is a major port and features a large manufacturing centre for the automotive industry, as well as a major oil refinery and storage area.

In the 1960s it was also a major textiles manufacturing area, though this industry has now declined significantly.

Geelong has always been one of the areas that state and federal governments focus on when they promote regional development away from the city of Melbourne.

Discussion Pointers

  1. Look at each of the scenes presented. Describe what happens in each scene.
  2. Describe the roles that we see each gender carrying out in the video clip. Does the clip present a clear division of gender roles or are there areas where both genders have the same role?
  3. The video clip uses stereotypes to construct its message. Describe the stereotypes that are shown for:
    • The man/husband/father
    • The woman/wife/mother
    • The boy/son/brother
    • The girl/daughter/sister.
  4. Does it matter if people are shown as stereotypes? Discuss this question.
  5. The video clip was made in the 1960s. Who do you think the likely audience for the clip was? How would that affect the way that it has been made?

Suggested Classroom Activities

  1. Survey your own family, or a family known to you. Look at the roles each person plays. Is there a division of roles according to gender? Compare your results with those of others in your class.
  2. If a similar video clip were made today for a similar audience and purpose, what would be similar / different?
  3. Modern films, TV shows and advertising frequently use gender stereotyping as a technique of persuasion. Collect some examples of this and present them in a display. You could also collect examples where gender stereotypes are not followed and some examples where the advertisers deliberately reverse the gender roles (for example, where a man is shown being incompetent in the kitchen and has to be ‘saved’ by the woman).
  4. Do you think gender stereotyping can have a harmful effect on people and on our society? Discuss this idea.

Modules That Use This Clip

SOSE/HSIE Year 9-10, English Year 7-8, English Year 9-10