Video Rogue nation, 2009: NSW in 1819, convict gulag or place of opportunity?

TLF ID M008346

This clip is an excerpt from the 2009 documentary 'Rites of passage', the second of a two-part series entitled 'Rogue nation'. The clip begins with historian Michael Cathcart providing contextual information about England in the early 1800s. He says that in the midst of the industrial revolution, millions of people were suffering from exploitation, poverty and ignorance, and reformers were campaigning for change. At the same time in Australia the children of transported convicts were 'growing up taller, stronger and more sober than their convict mums and dads'. In a dramatisation, British Commissioner John Thomas Bigge investigates the colony of NSW and writes that the children of the convicts 'do not seem to know their place'. He is more impressed by the 'exclusives', a class of successful free settlers and officers.




Educational details

Educational value
  • In the clip, British Commissioner John Thomas Bigge says that the children of the convicts 'do not seem to know their place', an indication of the way attitudes in the colony were changing at the time. Freed convicts were greatly supported by Lachlan Macquarie, governor of NSW from 1810 to 1821. Macquarie helped to develop the idea of Australia as a place where convicts could have a second chance, and where convicts' children could inherit. However, the colonial office strongly opposed this image of Australia as it wanted criminals to fear the threat of transportation.
Year level

4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9; 10; 11

Learning area
  • Civics and citizenship
  • History
  • Studies of society and environment

Other details

Contributors
  • Contributor
  • Name: National Film and Sound Archive
  • Organization: National Film and Sound Archive
  • Description: content provider
  • Address: ACT, AUSTRALIA
  • URL: http://www.nfsa.gov.au
  • Publisher
  • Name: National Film and Sound Archive (NFSA)
  • Organization: National Film and Sound Archive (NFSA)
  • Description: Publisher
  • Address: ACT, AUSTRALIA
  • URL: http://www.nfsa.gov.au
  • Resource metadata contributed by
  • Name: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Organisation: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Address: AUSTRALIA
  • URL: www.esa.edu.au
Access profile
  • Generic
Learning Resource Type
  • Video
Rights
  • © Education Services Australia Ltd and National Film and Sound Archive, 2010 (except where otherwise indicated). You may view, display, print out and copy this material for non-commercial educational purposes provided you retain all acknowledgements associated with the material.