Date(s) - 11 Nov 2012
2:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Museum of Australian Democracy
The Forgotten History of 11 November 1975
Each year the Museum of Australian Democracy marks the anniversary of the events that surrounded the dismissal of the Whitlam Labor Government in 1975. Our commemorations focus on how these events, deeply divisive at the time, reflect on the nature of Australia’s democracy: the fact that the crisis was resolved by an election and that all abided by the peoples’ decision demonstrates the strength of our democracy and our commitment to it.
Surprisingly, after almost forty years new information is still emerging about what happened during November 1975 and what it all meant. But with so much information, with so many stories, with so many words written, it is easy for significant aspects of the history of that time to be neglected.
This year we will focus our commemoration on one place, on one day. The day, of course is 11 November, and the place is the House of Representatives Chamber in the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House. Professor Jenny Hocking, who has written extensively about this period, and who has recently published the second volume of her biography of prime minister Gough Whitlam, believes that what happened in the Representatives Chamber has been long overshadowed by events in the Senate, and that it is now time to look more closely at what she calls ‘the forgotten history’ of the House of Representatives Chamber on 11 November 1975 and to discuss some of the new information revealed in her recently published book.
Professor Jenny Hocking will deliver a public lecture on Sunday 11 November at the Museum of Australian Democracy in Canberra to mark the anniversary of the dismissal of the Whitlam government. It will be held in the old House of Representatives chamber in Old Parliament House and will focus on events in that chamber on the afternoon of 11 November 1975, after the dismissal of the government.