No photos, no smart comments.
Just an important essay by a woman who has every right to feel joyous.
June 27, 2010
In the 1920s my grandmother was ostracised as a divorced woman. In the 1950s my mother, an international flight attendant, was not only weighed before and after each flight but forced to resign when she got married. In the 1960s anxious women struggling to define themselves in a new world of ”housewife” versus ”feminist” were told to have ”a cup of tea, a Bex and a good lie down”. By the ’70s man had walked on the moon and women still didn’t have equal pay. In the early ’80s Lindy Chamberlain was imprisoned for five years, largely, it seemed, because she didn’t mourn the death of her baby ”the way a woman should”. In the late ’80s I was told I couldn’t appear on television while pregnant because it would ”put people off their dinner”. In the ’90s I was deemed ”a mortgage risk” because I was a single mother. In 2005 it was proclaimed that Princess Mary’s greatest achievement, having given birth, was regaining her pre-pregnancy weight so quickly.
In 2010 it’s gobsmacking that our nation has its first female prime minister. Will the Gen Ys and Gen Zs ever know the significance of this historic time? Will they ever understand why their mothers and grandmothers openly cried last Thursday? Will future Australians know what it was like for the generations before them, growing up in a world where history was written by men and about men, and our only female role models were the Queen and Cinderella?