Thursday, 11 November 2010

Made in Dagenham

The British love making movies about their industrial tribulations; perhaps because they have so many of them. In any event they always seem to find an entertaining aspect to these upheavals as for example in 'Billy Elliot' which is already somewhat of a classic of the genre.

This time the subject is women in the Ford motor car factory taking strike action in 'Made in Dagenham'. They were 187 in a workforce, otherwise male, of 55,000 and these events took place in 1968. It is fascinating to relive the extraordinary discrimination of women in the workplace in those days. I started fulltime work in the Australian Public Service in the same year and the situation was no different here. Women in the service were paid less for performing exactly the same work and even stranger to recall these days they were required to resign when they married.

As films go this movie is a bit lightweight. It is pleasant enough without ever hitting any memorable heights but it is a useful record of injustice and I suppose a reminder jog that injustice needs to addressed wherever it exists.

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