ABC Talks Department scripts – Fact sheet 153

The Talks Department of the then Australian Broadcasting Commission (ABC) was established in 1936. Its central office was in Sydney, with offices in each of the state capitals.

A Talks Department's draft policy statement, written in 1940, gives an indication of the nature of talks broadcasts on ABC radio and later ABC television.

Talks are programmed on a wide array of subjects and every effort is made to make them instructive, stimulating to thought and entertaining. The subjects include literature, art, science and philosophy, as well as talks relating to current events of all kinds ranging from sport to international affairs. Talks about Australia figure prominently in the programme.(as well as) talks about men and women who have been prominent in various fields of endeavour.

The talks were authored and presented by thousands of Australian and international guests. The records generated by the Talks Department are wonderfully illustrative of Australian social, cultural and political life during the twentieth century.

ABC Talks Department scripts

The record series listed below contain scripts of talks presented by the Talks Department. The list is arranged in chronological order.

General scripts

Women's broadcasts

 Title or description of recordDate rangeSeries number
SeriesLondon and American letters – Women's Session scripts1940–51SP300/5
SeriesKitchen front scripts1942–48ST3332/3
SeriesWomen's broadcast scripts incorporating scripts for the Women's Session1945–52C3224

Wartime scripts

News presentations

Rural scripts

 Title or description of recordDate rangeSeries number
SeriesScripts – Rural Department – general1948–54SP620/1
SeriesScripts – land and its people1949–62SP620/2
SeriesScripts – land and its people1959–66SP897/2

Miscellaneous scripts

Other records of the Talks Department

The table below lists the main administrative records of the Talks Department, which include correspondence files and staff and reporting files.

Collection references

Sound recordings of talks

Sound recordings of talks have not been kept as systematically as the related talk scripts. Those that have survived are held within several general series of ABC sound recordings. Relevant series are C102, and C100 and C1827, for which lists are held in the reading room in Sydney.

Please note:

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