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Remembered Today:

Australian propaganda posters 1914-1918


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The idea of national identity comes through strongly with the Australia has promised ... ; and the iconic Kanga.

To me the poster is a departure from the Mother Lion and cubs style posters which seemed to be used quite frequently to make the link between 'home' and 'colonials' in the early years of war.

This poster says to me .. Australia is a country, WE have promised Britain more men, now AUSTRALIANS .. let's deliver.

A big play on the rising young nation scenario?

Des Freud

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Robbie,

The poster is an odd one. I am inclined to think it is not by an Australian. Given that the message is from Australians to Australians for consumption within Australia, I don’t see why clichéd kangaroo iconography is required to establish that Australia is somehow involved. The poster seems to stop just short of depicting Australia as upside down. The entreaty lacks a question mark too. I notice that people are being made to feel responsible for a promise that they had little or no part in promulgating. An age-old trick that is still with us.

Were such posters effective? In isolation one would think not. What is effective is the continual repetition of a theme, and 90 years ago posters would have an important role in such a campaign; more so than today. If something is continually repeated, even though it be in defiance of all logic and evidence, it becomes part of the fabric of existence, part of what people think they know. But you know a great deal more about this than I do, so I hope you will give us your view when winding up.

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A common theme for posters I've seen over the years was a plea to the sporting instincts of Australians, such as 'Enlist in the Sportsmens thousand'.

Trying to find a common ground between sport & war, and to not let your mates down.

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Yes, ANdrew. I found a postcard while googling so if I can find it again I will post it.

Thanks to all of you for your views.

Robbie

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Here's a few more. The AUssies certainly knew how to instill guilt in non-volunteers.

Robbie (an AUssie)

post-6-1103896966.jpg

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Mates,

The one I always liked is that poster that shows a mother and child being killed by German Troops on an out back station, The use of a water tank to show the family being lined up pleding for their lives is a intersting touch.

I think the caption was "Would you let this happen here" or words to the effect.

This is plainly aimed at Aussies and must have been done by an aussie.

I surpose like all these posters they are out and out Bull but powerfull in there impact.

I think we all remember the babies being cruxifed on the barns of Beljum.

S.B

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Mates,

The one I always liked is that poster that shows a mother and child being killed by German Troops on an out back station, The use of a water tank to show the family being lined up pleding for their lives is a intersting touch.

I think the caption was "Would you let this happen here" or words to the effect.

This is plainly aimed at Aussies and must have been done by an aussie.

I surpose like all these posters they are out and out Bull but powerfull in there impact.

I think we all remember the babies being cruxifed on the barns of Beljum.

S.B

Thanks Steve. I haven't seen this one before. Does anyone have a pic they can post?

Robbie

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Is this it?

I must say that German supply lines would have been somewhat stretched by the time they were swarming through Australia. Sad but not surprising to see Germans portrayed as savages. Did German propaganda treat the British and allies in the same spirit?

post-6-1104185364.jpg

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