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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: 9-10
Theme: Gender & Work

Key Concepts

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

Curriculum Applicability Notes

ACT:Everyday texts – Language: Contextual understanding
NSW:(1997 Syllabus) C5 Mass media
(2003 Syllabus) Stage 5 Outcome 4
NT:R/V 5.1 – 5.3
R/V 5+.1-5+.3
Qld:Cr 6.2
SA:Texts and contexts 5.3
Tas:Communicating – Being literate, Standard 4
Vic:Reading – Texts 6.6
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. What is the purpose of this video clip: to inform, to entertain, or to persuade? How does this affect the making of the video clip? Is it good and effective propaganda?
  4. The video clip uses stereotypes to construct its message. Is that a problem? Discuss your ideas.
  5. Who would be the likely audience for this video clip? How would that affect the way that it has been made?
  6. If a similar video clip were made today for a similar audience and purpose, what would be similar / different?

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. Modern films, TV shows and advertising frequently use gender stereotyping as a technique of persuasion. Does this matter? Collect some examples and discuss them.
  3. There is also a tendency to present role reversal situations — for example, the male who goes shopping and cannot do it properly, or the male who knows nothing about cars and is rescued by the technologically competent female. Prepare an argument about whether such gender reversal helps break down stereotypes, or in fact reinforces them.

Modules That Use This Clip

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