National Library of Australia

You must be logged in to Tag Records
Mavis Robertson interviewed by Sara Dowse [sound recording]
Bib ID 2615450
Format AudioAudio, OnlineOnline [sound recording]
Robertson, Mavis, 1930-2015, interviewee
Online Versions
Access Conditions Access open for research, personal copies and public use. 
Description 2003 
7 digital audio tapes (ca. 409 min.) 

Mavis Robertson, born in Melbourne, Vic. recalls her Irish family background; secondary education & university studies; her initial involvement in the Labor Club, Communist Party of Australia (CPA) and the Eureka Youth League; after the party split and being a member of the executive of the non-Soviet faction which retained the party name; motherhood in the 1950s; 1956 being a politically significant year, i.e. Hungarian Uprising, incidents involving Hungary and Russia at the Melbourne Olympics, 20th Congress of the Soviet Central Committee when Krushchev exposed Stalin; her husband Alec's extended trip to China & return in 1957, She speaks about events of the 1960s, such as, Eureka Youth League activities, Vietnam War protests, protests against nuclear testing in the Pacific; new "open CPA" policy and party concepts of democracy; Prague Spring and May 1968 Uprising; Yevtushenko; Women's liberation.

Robertson speaks about the 1970s, urban commune at Roseville; the Whitlam Government and backlash; developments in the CPA; coup in Chile, her husband's death in Mar.1974; She recalls the Campanero concert at Sydney Town Hall and Australian tour; further developments in CPA. Robertson talks about her role as filmaker, Changing the Needle, shot and produced in Hanoi made to mark the end of the Vietnam war; her resignation from CPA, early 1980s; her job with the Federation of Engine Drivers and Fireman's Association; in 1984 her move to Melbourne, work with Australian Council of Trade Unions & the building unions; her campaign to get super allowance converted to super payments for workers; 1989 involvement with Jessie Street activities; 1990s start of Women's Breakfasts and WIS (Women in Super); expos in major shopping complexes; spinoffs from the industry super funds; Industry Fund Services and the range of activities under its sponsorship; industry funds and their contribution to Australia, both economically and culturally.


Recorded on Sept. 26, 2003; Sept. 29, 2003 at St. Kilda, Vic.

Also available online

Index/Finding Aid Note Timed summary available. 
Subjects Robertson, Mavis, 1930-2015 -- Interviews.  |  Communist Party of Australia.  |  Australian Council of Trade Unions.  |  Eureka Youth League.  |  Communism -- Australia -- 1945-  |  Labor unions -- Australia -- 1945-  |  Labor union members -- Pensions -- Australia -- 1965-  |  Labor union members -- Retirement -- Australia -- 1965-  |  Australia -- Politics and government -- 1945-
Other authors/contributors Dowse, Sara, 1938- interviewer

Be the first to leave a comment!

This space is for comments to help us enhance our existing data for collection items. Comments are only reviewed by staff on a monthly basis. All enquiries should be sent via the Feedback or the Ask a Librarian links located at the top right hand side of this page.

Add your comment (you will be asked to log in)
close Can I borrow items from the Library?

You need Flash player 8+ and JavaScript enabled to view this video embedded.

You can view this on the NLA website.

close What can I get online?

You need Flash player 8+ and JavaScript enabled to view this video embedded.

You can view this on the NLA website.

close Can I get copies of items from the Library?

You need Flash player 8+ and JavaScript enabled to view this video embedded.

You can view this on the NLA website.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Flags
Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and other First Nations people are advised that this catalogue contains names, recordings and images of deceased people and other content that may be culturally sensitive. Please also be aware that you may see certain words or descriptions in this catalogue which reflect the author’s attitude or that of the period in which the item was created and may now be considered offensive.