Without Consent: Australia's past adoption practices

1 November 2019 to 26 January 2020

National Wool Museum
26 Moorabool Street
Geelong VIC 3220

Tour schedule

Opens:
1 November 2019
Closes:
26 January 2020
Location:
National Wool Museum
26 Moorabool Street
Geelong VIC 3220
Opens:
7 February 2020
Closes:
26 April 2020
Location:
State Library of South Australia
Corner North Terrace and Kintore Avenue
Adelaide SA 5000

Without Consent: Australia's past adoption practices examines, through the contributions of people affected by Australia's forced adoptions policies and practices, what happens when social expectations, morality and authority collide.

It is estimated that 250,000 Australians were affected by the policies and practices of forced adoption, with most adoptions occurring between 1950 and 1975. The policies saw unmarried mothers forced, pressured or coerced to give up their children rather than bear the shame and social stigma of pregnancy and birth outside marriage. Such pregnancies were shrouded in secrecy and the mothers hidden away until the post-partum period, when they were expected to return home, forget about their babies and get on with their lives.

They did not forget.

Visit the Forced Adoptions website to learn more, or view a selection of images from the exhibition.

This project has been assisted by the Department of Social Services.

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government's Visions of Australia program.

Copyright National Archives of Australia 2019