Tony Robinson explores the Rebels with a Cause. These were the people who stood up and said no. He explores the different rebels through history. The first rebel is found in Sydney, Australia.
It was clear that the British were going to say in Australia. They settled in a place that was considered sacred to the Aboriginal people. Tony Robinson meets up with Leanne Tobin, an Australian of Aboriginal descent. She tells the story of one rebel. He was a magic man and challenged people who came to settle. He was a man who could change into a crow and this allowed him to spy on the British. This rebel did not like what he was seeing. This man went to challenge the British soldiers. The soldiers shot him but the man did not die. The fact that he did not die only became part of his legend. Eventually, he was defeated and Aboriginals and Aboriginal culture went underground.
Tony then returns to Britain and talks about Queen Boudica. Britain was under invasion by the Romans. The Romans were going to change Britain. Within months of the invasion, the Romans were in control over the southern half of the country. When the Romans invaded Britain, they discovered a land ruled by a variety of kings and kingdoms. These kings made deals with the Romans. These deals worked out well for the Romans until the Iceni king died. They seized the property of the Iceni, whipped the Iceni queen, and raped her daughter. This queen was Boudica and she fought the Romans. Eventually, the Romans gained the upper hand and Boudica killed herself.
Nine hundred years later, this spirit was found in one woman: Kate Sheppard. She fought for women’s right to vote. The first country in the world that allowed women to vote was New Zealand and she was born in Britain. She not only fought for the women’s right to vote, she felt that women would vote against liquor. This caused the liquor manufacturers to fight against Kate. Thousands of people signed a petition for the women’s right to vote. The issue was voted on in the New Zealand parliament and the women won the right to vote.
Tony then travels to Melbourne, Australia, and 1969. The center of the rebellion was found in a theatre. The actors were tackling the issue of censorship. A playwright took on the authorities and wrote a play where the actors shouted obscenities. The actors were arrested by the real authorities and were taken to jail. The audience followed the actors to the jail shouting the lines of the play. Eventually, the actors were charged and put on trial. The first trial ended in dismissal. Eventually, the censorship laws were overturned.
Finally, Tony goes to central Victoria and the goldfields. Due to the gold, the population in central Victoria exploded. Fortunes were made and unmade in the goldfields. The goldfields were home to extravagance and excess. Eventually, the government started charging diggers fees to the people. The people were unhappy with the diggers fee. A police force was sent to the goldfields to enforce the new rules. The diggers started to dig in and try to stop the license checks. The police responded with more license checks. Eventually, the diggers were attacked. Dozens lost their lives in the fight. The survivors were put on trial for treason. However, due to the gruesome manner people would be killed for treason, the survivors were found not guilty.
Tony goes to five different sites to explore history’s rebels. I would just show the section on Boudica for a history class.
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