Admission Impossible


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1992, 54 Minutes. Classification: PG. Consumer Advice: War footage.

Examines the political forces and propaganda campaigns behind the White Australia Policy - a policy which aimed to allow only “pure white” immigrants.

Following World War Two, one of the largest mass migrations in history took place. More than five million people came to Australia, transforming it into the most multicultural country on earth. However, this was never meant to be. For much of the 20th century, successive Australian governments pursued a policy of deporting and barring entry to any race of people they considered undesirable. This was known as the White Australia Policy.

Admission Impossible is the true story of the behind-the-scenes political forces and propaganda campaigns that attempted to populate Australia with “pure white” migrants. The fear of being “swamped” with Asian immigrants kept this policy in place for over seven decades. This compelling story of how the shifts and upheavals in Asia, from colonial control to emerging new nations, caused great unease in Australia and strengthened the government's resolve to keep Australia “white” and “European”. Eyewitness accounts and recently discovered confidential documents reveal how immigration officers carried out racial selectivity following examination by medical officers for signs of "colour".
The White Australia policy was officially scrapped in 1972. Today Australia is still coming to terms with being part of the Asian region.

A Film Australia National Interest Program. Produced with the assistance of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. © 2011 National Film and Sound Archive of Australia.


Director: Alec Morgan

Year: 1992

Running Time: 54 Minutes

Featured People: James Dunn, John Curtin, Arthur Lock Chang, Arthur Calwell, Bernard Freedman, Greg Humphries, Elmar Saarepere, Keith Stodden, Dr Suzanne Rutland, Robert Menzies, Michael Thwaites, King Fong, Geoff Woodley, AG Townley, Al Grassby

Classification: PG. War footage

Curriculum Links: Australian History - paricularly relevant for Year 10 History 'Migration Experiences'; Politics, International Relations, Australian Migration Law.


Migrant Experience, The

SKU 198903600
Brand Film Australia

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