Australia A Workingman's Paradise Analysis

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Australia became known as a workingman’s paradise at the turn of the twentieth century, however, for a large majority of the population Australia was far from a paradise. Due to their rejection of the British class system, and the instalment of the eight hour working day and a basic wage Australians believed themselves to be an egalitarian society with equal opportunities. And this much was true, for the working class, white male. For the rest of the population, the women, children and non-Europeans life was a different story. For them, Australia was not the workingman’s paradise it claimed to be.
The first step towards Australia being known as a workingman’s paradise occurred in 1856, the beginning of the eight-hour day in Victoria for some working class men, which dubbed as the ‘most socially progressive countries in the world’ with Australia leading when it came to the rights and conditions of workers after a series of strikes and protests such as the Maritime Strike of 1890 in Vic, NSW, Qld, SA, the Shearers’ Strikes in 1891 and 1894 in Qld and the …show more content…

Job opportunities began to improve with compulsory education of children from ages six to fourteen in Victoria from 1872, decreed by the Victoria’s Education Act 1872, and New South Wales in 1883. The Employer’s Liability Act 1897 meant that workers now received a compensation for injuries. The political process of splitting from the British government began in 1899 and ended in 1901 with the federation of Australia, the states joining to become a single nation. This also meant the creation of a labour party, a representation of the working class in politics. In 1907 the principle of the basic wage is established due to the ‘Harvester Judgment’ and designed so that the average working man could support his wife and family. The minimum wage was set at two pounds and two shillings per week,

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