This is a printer friendly page
Free for educational use

Family Life in Geelong

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.
Year of production - 1966
Duration - 1min 32sec
Tags - belonging, family life, gender, national identity, sexism, stereotypes, see all tags


Family Life in Geelong

How to Download the Video Clip

To download a free copy of this Video Clip choose from the options below. These require the free Quicktime Player.

download clip icon Premium MP4 geelong_pr.mp4 (11.3MB).

ipod icon Broadband MP4 geelong_bb.mp4 (5.3MB), suitable for iPods and computer downloads.

Additional help.

buy iconYou can buy this clip on a compilation DVD.

About the Video Clip


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

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 capital city, Melbourne.

Classroom Activities


Pre-viewing exercises:

  1. Conduct a survey of your class.
    1. What types of homes do our classmates live in?
    2. Who lives in that household with your classmates?
    3. Who looks after younger children in your classmates’ families?
    4. Who works in your classmates’ families?
    5. How many times a week do your classmates’ families eat dinner together?

Viewing exercises:

  1. Imagine you are living in another country in 1966 and you saw this video clip.
    1. What would you think about Australian life?
    2. Do you think you could belong in this society?
    1. What is the tone of the music and when does it change?
    2. In what ways does the changing tone of the music affect the audience’s reaction to the images being shown?
    1. What sorts of vehicles are shown in this video clip?
    2. In what ways would the vehicles influence an audience’s wish to belong in Australia?
    1. How are filmic techniques used to create male and female roles in Australian suburban homes?
    2. In what ways could these stereotypes unsettle a viewer’s sense of belonging?
  2. In what ways do you think this film accurately/inaccurately presents the average family in Australia:
    1. in 1966?
    2. in 2006?

Extended creative writing exercise (40 minutes):

  1. You are a movie critic. Discuss the impact this depiction of family life in Australia in 1966 would have on
    1. Australian audiences
    2. foreign audiences
      Use the following words in your response: belonging, identity, rebellion, duty, family, roles, ideal, dream, reality.

Further Resources


Australian Institute of Family Studies – ‘Family Type 1976–2006’

Australian Institute of Family Studies – ‘Average household size and number of households 1911–2006’

Australian Government Department of Immigration and Citizenship – ‘Citizenship and Living in Australia – Family Life’