Category Archives: Blog

Parading Proud: The Builders’ Laborers’ Union of South Australia banner

Workers organised themselves from the early days of the colony. It is alleged that the first industrial dispute occurred as early as October 1836 on one of the first ships to dock. South Australia company manager Charles Hare was strong armed into paying additional wages to seamen threatening to Strike....

Susie Creamcheese and the Happy Birthday Party

Elections can be interesting times in this country, and State. With the South Australian State Election in full swing right now I wanted to take the time to look back to a previous State Election. The early 1970s was a time of social and cultural change, and in South Australia,...

A man sitting on a stool holding a stone

Poet in Residence

Hello – my name is David Chapple and I am the Centre of Democracy’s Poet in Residence. I have begun workshops to support the Poet in Residence program at the Centre of Democracy. The idea is to work outside (beyond the walls) the Centre initially and explore the broader ideas...

A yello crest shaped logo in yellow and blue. The tag line reads Knowledge is Power.

Kilkenny Slam Poets

For the last school term, year 6 and 7 students from Kilkenny Primary school have had fun taking part in a trial program using the Centre of Democracy as a HASS and Civics and Citizenship resource. We have designed bingo games, democracy walks, quiz’s, and more. Here is a selection...

Guest post

‘I shall die a Labor man’

In 1975, the rock star Alice Cooper was scheduled to tour Australia. John Bannon, later Premier of South Australia, was at the time senior adviser to Clyde Cameron, the Minister for Labour and Immigration in the Whitlam government. Their long association is documented in correspondence held in the Bannon Collection...

What does ‘Australian Citizenship’ really mean?

There is a lot of discussion about citizenship throughout our country at the moment. From debates about migration and ‘Australian values’ to the so called ‘citizenship crisis’, a name coined by the media describing the several members of the Australian Federal Parliament who have stepped down, or aside, while confirmation...

A photograph of Old Parliament House, Adelaide on North Terrace from the 1860s

Responsible Government for South Australia

When the South Australian Constitution was drawn up in 1856, it was one of the most radical and democratic in the world. From the establishment of the colony the governor governed the people on behalf of the British Empire. Both colonists and the Aboriginal people had no say. The governor...

Image: Wall text reading The Centre of Democracy

People Power – and Pink Shorts!

We’re proud to announce that the Centre of Democracy has now opened its doors. The new gallery showcases the people and ideas that have shaped democracy in South Australia. Featuring treasures from the state’s collections and the latest in digital technology, our goal is to challenge visitors to think again about people...

Norm Mitchell cartoon depicting dress code in parliament

Norm Mitchell and cartoon politics in the ’70s

The political cartoon has been an important mode of communication in Australian newspapers for centuries. Glazed in satire and saturated by humour, political cartoons reveal social feelings towards people and issues, and are activist in many ways. Norman Mitchell, commonly known as Norm, was born in NSW and from a...