Australian History, 1955.

Victorian Labor College Syllabus, 1955.

by the Victorian Labor College

Source: "Reason in Revolt", Source documents of Australian Radicalism.
Published: by The Industrial Printing and Publicity Co, Ltd., Carlton, 1955.
Transcription/HTML: by Kevin Goins.
Public Domain: Marxists Internet Archive (2007). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.


Founded 1917

Controlled by affiliated Unions and the Trades Hall Council for the purpose of Independent Working Class Education

[This document was marked with a stamp entitled: “Union Label”]


Classes For 1955

Labor History and Politics: Weekly—Beginning Tuesday, March 22.  Class Leader: E. Tripp.

Economics: Weekly—Beginning Wednesday, March 23.  Class Leader: H. Lahy.

Industrial History: Weekly—Beginning Thursday, March 24.  Class Leader: Miss M. Holdworth.

Public Speaking and English: Fortnightly—Beginning Monday, June 6.  Class Leader: T. W. Brennan.

ONLY one which can assist you—a member of the working class—to protect and improve your living standards.
NO other college, neither the University, nor any technical school, has that object.


Can go nowhere else but the Labor College,
because it is the Union's own College.

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Labor History and Politics

Every Tuesday at 8 p.m., from March 22

Students in this class not only study Socialist theory, they develop a theoretical understanding of the Labor Movement.  They are helped to analyse political events and to apply correct tactics for the progressive development of the Labor Movement.

The subjects include:—

(1) Important events of the past and their bearing on modern political struggles:—

(a) Industrial revolution; (b) the great French revolution; (c) stormy struggles of 1848; (d) Paris Commune.

(2) Development of Socialist theory:—

(a) Utopian Socialists; (b) Reformism; (c) Socialism of Marx ands Engels; (d) conflicting theories in the First International.

(3) History and theoretical controversies of Russian revolution:—

(a) History of Bolsheviks; (b) 1917 revolution; (c) formation of Third International; (d) theory of permanent revolution and socialism in a single country; (e) conflicting therories on Russia.

(4) Australian Labor Movement and its part in world events:—

(a) Origins of Australian socialism; (b) compulsory arbitration; (c) conflicting theories in the two world wars; (d) A.L.P. and Communists.


Economics For Unionists

Every Wednesday at 8 p.m., from March 23

  1. Introduction, Meaning and Methods, Some Terms Used
  2. The Worker and His Wage
  1. Labor.
  2. Wages.
  3. Trade Unions.
  4. Standards of Living and Methods of Fixing Wages.
  1. The Employer and His Income
  1. Capital.
  2. Employers' Enterprises: Individual Firms, Compaines, Trade Organisations, Amalgamations, Trusts, etc.
  3. Employers' Organisations.
  4. Interest, Rents, Profits, etc.
  1. The Productive Process
  1. History of the Process:
  1. Pre-Capitalist;
  2. Capitalist.
  1. The requirements and organisation of production today.
  2. Incentives to production.
  1. The Product of Industry
  1. The Commodity.
  2. Its Value and Price.
  1. Money and Money Reform
  1. Money.
  2. Credit.
  3. The Gold Standard.
  1. Crises
  1. Inflation and Deflation.
  2. Depressions.
  1. Monopolies
  2. Banks, International Trade and Foreign Exchange
  3. What Unionists Can Do


Australian Industrial History

Every Thursday at 8 p.m., from March 24

The object of these classes is to help unionists to take an active and informed part in the work of their unions and the Labor Movement generally.

  1. The English Background.
  1. Before and after the Industrial Revolution;
  2. English Trade Unionism;
  3. Conditions of the Workers.
  1. The Foundation of Australia.
  1. Convict Period;
  2. Wool;
  3. Gold;
  4. Other Industry;
  5. Union Beginnings.
  1. The Nineties.
  1. Strikes;
  2. Bank Crash;
  3. Politics
  1. Federation.
  2. The Industrial Changes, 1914-18.
  3. Industry and Unions between the Wars.
  4. 1939-45.
  1. Industry;
  2. Unions;
  3. Political Relations;
  4. Promises.
  1. Legal Protection of Workers.
  1. Wages;
  2. Accidents.
  1. Union Administraiton and Problems.


Public Speaking and English

Fortnightly: Mondays at 8 p.m., Beginning June 6

Students must qualify for this class by attending one other class.  Ex-students from previous years may be enrolled.  This is to ensure that all students will be able to undertake practical work from the beginning of the class.  Many are anxious to be effective speakers, but the first essential is a knowledge of your subject matter.  This can be obtained in other College classes.

Mr. Brennan is exceptionally gifted in the art of making all students feel at their ease in addressing the class, and even if you have had previous difficulty in addressing meetings, you will find that this difficulty is soon overcome, providing that you are familiar with your subject.

You will receive points on platform speaking, debates, taking part in union and A.L.P. meetings, as well as guidance in English and pronunciation.

All classes are held at the Trades Hall, Room 42, at 8 p.m.