(Study Guide) Black Soldier Blues

Black Soldier Blues (Nicole McCuaig, 2005) is a 52-minute film about an aspect of the Australian experience of the American 'invasion' of the Second World War. During the Second World War, from late 1941, an estimated one million American servicemen and women passed through or spent some time in Australia on their way to the Pacific Front. In Black Soldier Blues we see a focus on one element of that 'invasion', the experience of black servicemen. How would white Australia react to these men? How would they respond to Australians? How would their fellow white Americans see them? A study of the film can introduce students to a wide range of issues in an accessible way.

Black Soldier Blues is a film that can be used in Australian History at middle to upper secondary levels. It could also be used in any courses looking at issues of Australia's race history and attitudes.

While the film focuses almost solely on black soldiers in Australia, this study guide looks also at the broader nature of the American experience. Black Soldier Blues is presented as a resource to help explore this element, which is usually neglected in other sources about the period.

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