The previous evening ABC TV had aired “Brazen Hussies” - a 2020 Australian documentary recording the history of the Women's Liberation Movement in Australia from 1965 to 1975. This era, seared in the memories of so many, formed the foundation of the morning’s discussion. We covered the impact of the pill, the role of religion, the role of Women’s Weekly magazine, raising girls as future wives, access to education, gender-based wages, the right to employment when married or pregnant, the definition and aims of feminism, 6 o’clock closing, and so much more.
(View Brazen Hussies at https://vimeo.com/ondemand/brazenhussies)
The impact of Germaine Greer’s 1970 “Female Eunuch” and 2019 Jane Caro’s 2019 reflections and commentary in “Accidental Feminist” as authors who “put words to our experiences” was also included.
In the context of how difficult it was for many women to get an education Andi introduced us to Elizabeth Gaskell’s character “My Lady Ludlow”. The novel was printed in a women’s magazine called Household Words in 1858. Lady Ludlow described education as “a bad thing, if given indiscriminately” (Ref: Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_Lady_Ludlow). The full text is available online at Project Gutenburg - https://www.gutenberg.org/files/2524/2524-h/2524-h.htm
It’s said that discussing either football, religion or politics is a surefire way to destroy barbecue bonhomie. Experience tells me that combining all three of these national “holy grails” into a single barbeque does not compare to the historical and current angst often attached to the social movement called feminism.
On 16 April we concluded the session on Family Violence. I’m disheartened by recent tragedies and with the continual escalation of Family Violence. Never look away. Call 1800respect/1800 737732.
Bringing this month’s report to a gentle close, we thank Andi again for telling us about this, a mother’s sage entry in her child’s autograph book (remember those?).
“If wisdom’s ways you wisely seek,
Five things observe with care,
To whom you speak,
Of whom you speak,
And how, and when, and where.”
― Caroline Lake Ingalls (mother of Laura Ingalls Wilder, and recorded in "Little House on the Prairie")
- Discussion Group: Tuesday 4th May 2021 10 – 12 noon @ Cooinda
- Course Content: Friday 21 May 2021 1 – 3pm @ Benalla Seniors Building Fawkner St.