womens rights

The ‘mother’ and the ‘witch’

Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor is highly regarded by her public – indeed she’s very popular and is referred to as  ‘sister, aunt, even mother’. She embodies what the German soul wants now according to Barrie Kosky, the former Australian artistic and theatre director,  now based in Berlin. Merkel is a former chemist, he adds, and describes her as ‘boring’, even ‘staid’. Even so, few people dislike her, and even his […]

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Surrogacy-male violence against poor women

On ABC TV’s ‘Foreign Correspondent’ program July 8, reporter Jane Cowan took a critical look at commercial surrogacy. The Last Resort was filmed in Cancun, Mexico where poor women, often from rural villages come to the popular tourist city hoping to become surrogate mothers. In Mexico successful surrogates are paid up to $13,000 for the delivery of a child to desperate infertile western couples. The business of surrogacy takes place at Planet Hospital, […]

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Japan’s apology to the survivors of sexual slavery must remain

It was with surprise and regret that I read the news that the present Japanese government is considering revoking its apology to the thousands of women forced into prostitution during World War 11. Tragically up to 200,000 women were forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military during World War II in one of the world’s biggest cases of sexual trafficking. Most of the women came from Korea, with many […]

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Surviving Peace: A Political Memoir

Surviving Peace: A Political Memoir is described by author and feminist Kathleen Barry as a deeply human narrative set within the growing body of feminist writings on war.  Olivera Simić tells the story of her life which changed irrevocably after the death of the former Yugoslavian President, Josip Tito  when she was just seven years old. ‘I was proud to be a Yugoslavian girl and belonged to what I regarded as a heterogeneous […]

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Seek revenge or turn the other cheek – It’s up to Mr Bates!

        I missed the episode of Downton Abbey when sweet Anna, maid to Lady Mary Crawley was brutally raped by a visiting valet called Mr Green. Audiences were understandably distressed and Downton fans accused the writers of using a sexual assault to ‘spice up’ the show. But I suspect there’s much more to come now that Mr Bates, Anna’s husband knows about the rape and is plotting […]

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Premier Denis Napthine has reignited the debate over women’s reproductive rights

  Common sense should dictate that the issue of abortion be left to pregnant women to decide. But when the history of women’s fight for the right to abortion is considered, it’s no wonder it’s still firmly in the hands of wheeling and dealing politicians. In the state of Victoria, abortion has made the headlines for the last two weeks with the Independent and balance-of-power MP Geoff Shaw  plotting the […]

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‘The Forgotten Rebels of Eureka’ by Claire Wright – a review

This post is timely for it is now 159 years since the famous uprising known as the Eureka Stockade. The story of the massacre in Ballarat on December 3, 1854 after police and soldiers broke the miner’s stronghold  is one of Australia’s great stories, but according to Claire Wright, author of The Forgotten Rebels of Eureka, the story we learned as children neglected half of the participants-the women.

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