History Week 2021 – From Ground Up

Inner West Council

Inner West Council’s Library and History Services has a packed program of free online events for History Week (4-12 September).

History Week 2021 is part of the History Council of New South Wales annual, state-wide celebration of history.

The year’s theme is ‘From the Ground Up’. The theme was suggested by Mina Bui Jones from Addison Road Community Organisation, who said it was a reminder of the importance of place and Country.

“But it also suggests people’s histories, local histories, community histories — stories from the streets and from the soil that provide the material and the momentum for the making of history.”

The Inner West is home to many grassroots community groups that have achieved amazing social initiatives ‘from the ground up’.

History Week will celebrate them and their dedication and hard work to achieve outcomes for the benefit of the wider community.

Podcasts available September 1-12 at innerwest.nsw.gov.au/HistoryWeek

• From the Ground Up: forefront of Gay and Lesbian activism

Robyn Plaister, feminist and lesbian rights activist for and inspiration for the ABC TV show The Riot, talks about her life as a social agitator.

• From the Ground Up: interview with the Federation of Italian Migrants (FILEF)

President Claudio Marcello and Secretary Bruno Dibiase reflect on the activities and activism of FILEF and discuss their human rights achievements over five decades – from Aboriginal rights to fighting for migrant worker’s rights.

• From the Ground Up: Many Little Voices: raising multicultural communities in the Inner West – Addison Road History Centre

An examination of the historic role of one of the first multi-cultural childcare centres, Addison Road Childcare Centre in Marrickville, opened by prime minister Bob Hawke in 1988.

Mental Health From the Ground Up: Pioneering consumer activists who changed mental health, Saturday 11 September 2pm – 4pm

Until the 1970s, mental health care was dire. In the 1980s, pioneering consumer advocates such as Janet Meagher, Meg Smith and Simon Champ helped force change in mental health care. Registration for this event is essential.

Online galleries – exhibitions from the archives of the Inner West Library and History collection

• Camp Inc 1971-2021: Photographs and ephemera celebrating the work of Camp Inc (Campaign Against Moral Persecution), Sydney’s first lesbian and gay political organisation

• FILEF 1970-2021: Rarely seen images from the activism work of Federation of Italian Migrant Workers and Families

• Moratorium: When Sydney filled the streets to stop a war: From Addison Road’s Living Museum on the moratorium marches that sought to stop Australian involvement in the Vietnam War 50 years ago.

Online talks

Author Matt Murphy discusses his new book RUM: A distilled History of Colonial Australia. Wednesday 15 September

Rum looks at not just how much was drunk in colonial Australia (a lot!), but also the lengths people went to get their hands on it, the futile efforts of the early governors to control it, and the ten disastrous and/or absurd consequences of its consumption.

Register at eventbrite.

UN.SET.LED by the History Council: Annual History Lecture 2021. Curators in Conversation with Laura McBride and Dr Mariko Smith

Australian Museum’s Laura McBride (Director, First Nations) and Dr Mariko Smith (First Nations Curator) on the ground breaking Unsettled at the Australian Museum and the process of presenting a First Nations-led exhibition about the legacy of colonisation, constructions of Australian history, and the importance of truth-telling to realise change.

Online lecture: date still to be announced.

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