1960s in Australia: people, power and politics

Shirleene Robinson (Editor), Julie Ustinoff (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportEdited Book/Anthology


The 1960s is one of the most heavily mythologised decades of the twentieth century. More than 50 years on, the era continues to capture the public's imagination. The 1960s in Australia: People, Power and Politics recognises the complexity of social and cultural change by presenting a broad range of contributions that acknowledge an often overlooked fact - that not everyone experienced the 1960s in the same way. The diversity of the time is confirmed by contributions from a number of expert Australian historians who each provide an insight into Australia in the 1960s, offering an understanding of the social realities of this period as well as the ebbs and flows of transnational influence. This collection includes a featured contribution by prominent Australian historian, Raymond Evans, who provides a personal insight into the 1960s. Other contributors also place 'the lived experience' at the centre of their analysis by considering the growth of modern flats, the impact of cosmopolitanism, and sex and sexuality in the 'Sixties'. The book also highlights the way power was deployed and deconstructed during this era by considering the psychiatric profession, the agenda of the counter-culture, and the role that women's magazines played in reinforcing dominant gender paradigms. The complex politics of the era are also explored through the transnational impact of figures such as Anthony Crosland, the impact of the Vietnam War, and the multiplicity of motivations behind the anti-war protest and the Aboriginal rights movement of the era. The 1960s in Australia: Power, People and Politics is a fresh focus on a significant time in Australia's history. It brings together a collection of innovative and engaging explorations into the Australian 'Sixties', which underline the complexity of the time. Shirleene Robinson is Vice Chancellor's Innovation Fellow at Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia. She is the author of Something like Slavery? Queensland's Aboriginal Child Workers, 1842-1945, the co-author of Speaking Out: Stopping Homophobic and Transphobic Abuse in Queensland, the editor of Homophobia: An Australian History and co-editor of Crime Over Time: Temporal Perspectives on Crime and Punishment in Australia. She has previously taught at Bond University on Australia's Gold Coast; the University of Queensland, where she obtained her PhD; and the University of Wales (Lampeter). Apart from the 1960s, her research interests include gender and sexuality, epidemics (particularly HIV/AIDS) and race and colonialism. Julie Ustinoff holds a PhD in History from the University of Queensland, where she has also taught courses on the 1960s, Australian history and popular culture. Her main research interests are in the fields of cultural history, gender relations and the media. She is the co-author of A Crowning Achievement: A Study in Australian Beauty, Business and Charitable Enterprise. She has also served as a historical consultant on the National Museum of Australia's touring exhibition Miss Australia, A Nation's Quest and was one of three historians selected to curate the official Queensland Sesqui-Centenary exhibition to mark 150 years of the state's separation from New South Wales.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationCambridge
PublisherCambridge Scholars Publishing
Number of pages253
ISBN (Print)9781443836395
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Australia--Social conditions--20th century
  • Australia--Social life and customs--20th century
  • Australia--Politics and government--20th century
  • Nineteen sixties


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