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Bread and Dripping (1981)


Four women recall raising families during the Great Depression of the late 1920s and 1930s. The interviews are intercut with historical footage of the living conditions of both white and Indigenous families and footage showing events of the time such as protest marches and the Glebe Militant Women’s Group.

Curator’s notes

The title refers to a meal consisting of sliced bread soaked in residue animal fat from cooking. The fat is soaked into the bread and eaten when no other food is available.

This poignant story of survival reminds us of the true battlers, and throws into perspective the current use of the term to describe families living on low incomes.

These brave Australians struggled to survive and raise their families during the Great Depression. The film also looks at the activism of women and the beginnings of the early feminist movement in Australia. It was produced with the assistance of the Australian Film Commission’s (AFC) Women’s Film Fund (WFF) that was available during the 1970s and ’80s.