The archaeology of poverty and human dignity: charity and the work ethic in a 1930s Depression era itinerant's camp on the Toowoomba Range escarpment, Queensland

Barker, Bryce and Lamb, Lara (2009) The archaeology of poverty and human dignity: charity and the work ethic in a 1930s Depression era itinerant's camp on the Toowoomba Range escarpment, Queensland. Archaeologies: Journal of the World Archaeological Congress, 5 (2). pp. 263-279. ISSN 1555-8622

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Abstract

This paper outlines the ethnohistory and archaeology of a Great Depression camp for unemployed men, established at Toowoomba, Queensland, in 1932. The camp was self sufficient and highly ordered. We interpret the material signature of the camp as a symbol of main-stream middle-class Australian values. Thus the camp is also a material symbol of the work ethic central at this time to notions of human dignity, respect and the moral development of individuals. We conclude that the archaeology of the camp demonstrates a strong work ethic among the ‘inmates’ and a degree of visible charity enabled by the historical concept of the ‘deserving poor’.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Author's version deposited in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher (Springer).
Depositing User: Professor Bryce Barker
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Arts - Department of Humanities and International Studies
Date Deposited: 02 Feb 2010 03:07
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 23:24
Uncontrolled Keywords: Australia; Great Depression; deserving poor; work ethic; unemployment; homeless
Fields of Research (FOR2008): 14 Economics > 1402 Applied Economics > 140203 Economic History
16 Studies in Human Society > 1601 Anthropology > 160104 Social and Cultural Anthropology
21 History and Archaeology > 2103 Historical Studies > 210303 Australian History (excl. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander History)
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO2008): E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970121 Expanding Knowledge in History and Archaeology
Identification Number or DOI: doi: 10.1007/s11759-009-9101-4
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/5706

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