Be inspired this International Women's Day with stories about and by some incredible Australian women.
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.
This new edition of Charmian Clift’s essays, selected and introduced by her biographer Nadia Wheatley, is drawn from the weekly newspaper column Clift wrote through the turbulent and transformative years of the 1960s. In these ‘sneaky little revolutions’, as Clift once called them, she supported the rights of women and migrants, called for social justice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, opposed conscription and the war in Vietnam, acknowledged Australia’s role in the Asia-Pacific, fought censorship, called for a local film industry — and much more. In doing so, she set a new benchmark for the form of the essay in Australian literature.
The trailblazing McDonagh sisters were the first women in Australia to form their own film production company. Between 1926 and 1933, while they were in their mid-twenties, these sassy sisters produced four feature films and a number of documentaries. In Those Dashing McDonagh Sisters, Mandy Sayer reveals the sisters’ remarkable story, from daughters of a respected Sydney surgeon with a love of theatre and the arts, to their first feature film, Those Who Love (1926), an instant hit, and their controversial final film, Two Minutes Silence (1933). Today, their most famous feature, The Cheaters, is frequently screened at international film festivals around the world, most notably in New York and London, to rapturous reviews.
Sexual harassment, domestic violence and date rape had not been named, although they certainly existed, when Damned Whores and God's Police was first published in 1975. That was before the Sex Discrimination Act of 1984 and before large numbers of women became visible in employment, in politics and elsewhere across society. It's hard to imagine an Australia where these abuses were not yet fully understood as obstacles to women's equality, yet that was Australia in 1975.
It was in this climate that Anne Summers identified 'damned whores' and 'God's police', the stereotypes that characterised all women as being either virtuous mothers whose function was to civilise society or bad girls who refused, or were unable, to conform to that norm and who were thus spurned and rejected by mainstream Australia.
These stereotypes persist to this day, argues Anne Summers in this updated version of her classic book which, in the 40 years since it was first published, has sold well over 100,000 copies and been set on countless school and university syllabuses. Who are today's damned whores? And why do women themselves still want to be God's Police? And although sexual harassment, domestic violence and date rape are well understood today they are nevertheless still with us and seem to be increasing. The fight is far from over.
One of the age-old questions of philosophy is what does it mean to live a good life? In this extraordinary book, scholar and writer, Julienne van Loon, applies a range of philosophical ideas to her own experience. Van Loon engages with the work of six leading contemporary thinkers and writers — Rosi Braidotti, Nancy Holmstrom, Siri Hustvedt, Laura Kipnis, Julia Kristeva and Marina Warner — through interrogating and enlivening their ideas on love, play, fear, work, wonder and friendship.
Her journey is intellectual and deeply personal, political and intimate at once. It introduces readers to six extraordinary women whose own deeply thoughtful work has much to offer all of us. They may transform our own views of what it means to live a good life.
In Australian Women War Reporters, Jeannine Baker provides a much-needed account of the pioneering women who reported from the biggest conflicts of the twentieth century. Two women covered the South African War at the turn of the century, and Louise Mack witnessed the fall of Antwerp in 1914. Others such Anne Matheson, Lorraine Stumm and Kate Webb wrote about momentous events including the rise of Nazism, the liberation of the concentration camps, the aftermath of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and the Cold War conflicts in Korea and Southeast Asia. These women carved a path for new generations of female foreign correspondents who have built upon their legacy.
From pioneering and outback flights to delivering Spitfires or tackling the jungles of New Guinea, Australian Women Pilots tells of ten Australians with extraordinary stories.
Women have been flying since the early days of aviation but, with a few notable exceptions, they have rarely been visible or well known. Kathy Mexted shares the feats of trailblazers like Nancy Bird Walton, Deborah Wardley, who was told by Ansett that women couldn't be pilots, and Gaby Kennard, the first Australian woman to fly solo around the world. Others are perhaps less known, but as pilots involved with the Royal Flying Doctor Service, Britain's Air Transport Auxiliary, the RAAF, aerial agriculture or long-range ferrying, their stories are just as extraordinary.
Packed with drama, adventure and sometimes heartbreak, this riveting book is a salute to those women who refused to keep their feet on the ground.
There are few memorials to colonial businesswomen, but if you know where to look you can find many traces of their presence as you wander the streets of Sydney. From milliners and dressmakers to ironmongers and booksellers; from publicans and boarding-house keepers to butchers and taxidermists; from school teachers to ginger-beer manufacturers: these women have been hidden in the historical record but were visible to their contemporaries.
Catherine Bishop brings the stories of these entrepreneurial women to life, with fascinating details of their successes and failures, their determination and wilfulness, their achievements, their tragedies and the occasional juicy scandal. Until now we have imagined colonial women indoors as wives, and mothers, domestic servants or prostitutes. This book sets them firmly out in the open.