‘The radicalisation of the campuses 1967-74‘, Australian National University course material for ‘Marxist interventions’ course
Based on a chapter from Armstrong’s (now hard to get) book, One, Two Three, What are We Fighting For? (Socialist Alternative, Melbourne 2001). The article gives a summary of student political activities at Monash, Queensland, Sydney, Adelaide, Melbourne, La Trobe, Flinders and Macquarie universities. At one point the author asks the question: ‘how was it possible for such a relatively small number of activists (on most campuses at best two or three per cent of students) to have such a decisive impact – to set the political tone on campus after campus?’ The thread running through most activity was opposition to the Vietnam War. (Related was opposition to the South African apartheid regime.)
A study from a different ideological perspective and concentrating on one university only is Paul Francis Perry’s The Rise and Fall of Practically Everybody: an Account of Student Political Activity at Monash University, 1965-72. Some of the people mentioned by Armstrong are featured in interviews on the Hell No! We Won’t Go! Facebook page. Taking a much broader (but more expensive) perspective is Jon Piccini’s new book, Transnational Protest, Australia and the 1960s; Global Radicals. You can buy it by the chapter, which makes it even more expensive.
22 May 2016 updated