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j 
 Is actually a song
 Was written in 1971
 Songwriter was Eric Bogle a Scottish immigrant
 Is about World War One, but was written as a protest
against the Vietnam War
 Alec Campbell, the last surviving Australian veteran of
Gallipoli, died in 2002; Peter Casserly, the last digger to
see action in WWI, died in 2005; and John Campbell
Ross, the last digger from WWI (who did not see
combat), died in 2009
 Was made famous by other artists, especially overseas
j   
 
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1. Who is telling the story in the ballad?

The story is being told by a young Australian man who


used to be a rover. He was conscripted and sent
away to fight.
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2. How prepared were the soldiers for war?

The soldiers were completely unprepared. Most were


ordinary men (such as the narrator) who were forced
to go to war. They were given a tin hat and a gun, but
the narrator doesn·t mention any training.
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·. What does the narrator remember about the first day?

The narrator remembers very well the way the ¶blood


stained the sand and the water· and how the soldiers
were ¶butchered like lambs to the slaughter.· The Turkish
army was well-prepared for the attack and ten minutes
nearly destroyed the Australian forces.
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ü. What happened that made the man wish he were


dead?

The narrator of the poem lost his legs after a Turkish


shell exploded. He says that he ¶never knew there were
worse things than dying· and was thankful that no-one
would pity him once he came home.
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5. What comment does the song make about the


people at home when troops returned from Gallipoli?

The song contrasts the cheering crowd who attended


the soldiers· departure with a crow who did not cheer,
but ¶stood and stared, then turned their faces away.·
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*. The ballad is obviously Australian. Identify words and
phrases that indicate this.
rover - a man who travelled around working
Murray Basin - the area around the Murray River
waltzing - to travel while working
matilda - term used for a swag or pack
Johnny Turk - a Turkish soldier
Australia
arse over head - fall over
wild bush - forest
every April - refers to ANZAC Day
porch - veranda
billabong - lake, pond
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7. What would you identify as the dominant discourse of


this poem? How is it similar to the dominant discourse in
o  o 
?

The dominant discourse of this poem is one of anti-war


due to the suffering faced by the soldiers. It is similar to
o  o 
 in that it highlights how soldiers
have to go through awful experiences and are often
scarred, physically or emotionally for life.
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. How does this ballad position you to view war?

This ballad positions me to view war as a horrible waste


of young men·s lives. It highlights the emotional and
physical torment that soldiers face using powerful
imagery. The ballad also emphasises the futility of war
and the way that both sides suffer equally.
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 Topic sentence: this answers the question in one


basic sentence and outlines your reasons.

 Body:
— State your first argument/point/reason
— Give evidence from the poem
— Elaborate on this evidence

— State your second argument/point/reason


— Give evidence from the poem
— Elaborate on this evidence

 Concluding sentence: summarises the paragraph,


links back to topic sentence.
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