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Women and Whitlam

Revisiting the revolution

Edited by Michelle Arrow

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The Whitlam government transformed Australia. And yet the scope and scale of the reforms for Australian women are often overlooked.

The Whitlam government of 1972–75 appointed a women’s advisor to national government — a world first — and reopened the equal pay case. It extended the minimum wage for women, introduced the single mother’s benefit and paid maternity leave in the public service, ensured cheap and accessible contraception, funded women’s refuges and women’s health centres, introduced accessible, no-fault divorce and the Family Court, and much more.

Women and Whitlam brings together three generations — including Elizabeth Evatt, Eva Cox, Patricia Amphlett, Elizabeth Reid, Tanya Plibersek, Heidi Norman, Blair Williams and Ranuka Tandan — to revisit the Whitlam revolution and to build on it for the future.

'Political history at its best.’ — Jenny Hocking

'... a reminder that politics can be radical, feminist and one that we can be proud of.’ — Yasmin Poole

‘Invaluable … a clarion call to younger generations.' — Virginia Haussegger

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