Articles on Gender

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Un-doing disrespect: women and design

Having recently attended my university’s graduation ceremony, I noted again what seems to have become a global trend — design is becoming a field where the majority of practitioners are women. I have made…
Women’s Liberation was a worldwide mobilisation that paved the way for powerful critiques of conventional thinking about gender, sexuality and identity. Warren K. Leffler, 1970/Library of Congress

Four decades of thinking gender: the gains, struggles and debates

The past four decades have produced gains around the world for women and girls in literacy, formal education, life expectancy, workforce participation and access to some professions. We have also seen…
The roots of gender stereotyping are perhaps not so old as we thought. Kostsov/Shutterstock

Our ancient ancestors may have known more about gender than we do

A recent advert by sanitary product manufacturer Always asks us to think harder about the term “like a girl” by asking young adults and teenagers to run, throw or fight “like a girl”. Without thinking…
The recent introduction of unisex dormitories in the Norwegian army was associated with a decline in incidences of sexual assault. Metziker

Why Norway says No Way to gender segregation in the military

Earlier this year, Norwegian sociologists Ulla-Britt Lilleaas and Dag Ellingsen released a report on their country’s armed forces entitled The Army: The Vanguard, Rear Guard and Battlefield of Equality…
Women who’ve lost touch with family and friends, or have no access to funds, turn to emergency accommodation in women’s refuges. Shutterstock

Why doesn’t she just leave? The realities of escaping domestic violence

“Why doesn’t she just leave?” is the common question people ask when trying to understand domestic violence. The answer is far from straightforward. Central to domestic violence is an ongoing pattern of…
Until recently, violence against women was not reported prominently or consistently by mainstream media. Why not? Dave Malkoff

Behind media silence on domestic violence are blokey newsrooms

Did the grim story of dapper real estate agent Gerard Baden-Clay’s calculated murder of his wife Allison in April 2012, played out recently in a Brisbane court with a life sentence, make you feel afraid…
Sia refuses to use her body to sell her music. Laurence Barnes

Sia may be the face of music’s future

Australian singer-songwriter Sia’s new album 1000 Forms of Fear has been released internationally today, accompanied by a deluge of media reporting her story: she’s one of a handful of the most successful…
Is this magazine cover too racy – or did other factors make newsagents decide not to stock Archer? Archer Magazine

Is Archer magazine really ‘inappropriate for sale’?

When a Google search can summon any image you like online, it seems anachronistic to hear of a print publication supposedly encountering distribution problems on the basis of its content. Yet that’s just…
Isla Vista spree killer Elliot Rodger wrote in a chilling ‘manifesto’ that he was going to kill all the blonde and beautiful girls because they had rejected him sexually. EPA/Michael Nelson

Elliot Rodger: when sexual rejection turns deadly

So far, much of the media response to the spree killing that took place in Isla Vista, California, late last week has focused on the sole perpetrator of the attacks, 22-year-old Elliot Rodger. His rantings…
The responsibility to prevent unwanted sexual attention in licensed venues lies with everyone. Adam Radosavljevic/Shutterstock

Sexual violence in pubs and clubs: just a normal night out?

Unwanted sexual behaviour is becoming a normal part of a night out for women, with many reporting they experience anything from comments to groping and sexual assault. Sexual violation of the kind reported…
The UN has singled out Iran for discrimination against women, so why is it elected to the main UN body dedicated to gender equality? EPA/Stefan Zaklin

Having Iran as its standard-bearer for women’s rights discredits UN

In March, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon reported to the General Assembly on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran. Ban expressed concern that women in Iran “are subject to discrimination…
Wurst embraces a wide spectrum of individuals who recognise their own gender performance as imperfect. Georg Hochmuth/EPA

Conchita Wurst’s Eurovision win and the power of performance

Four songs in to the final of the Eurovision Song Contest on Saturday night, six Icelandic men in a band called Pollapönk took to the stage dressed in fluorescent suits and declared to an ecstatic house…
Despite the increasing prominence of women’s sport, the number of women in leadership positions in professional sport is still low. Why? AAP/Joe Castro

What’s holding back women from leadership roles in Australian sport?

Recently, it was reported that the AFL, the Australian Sports Commission and the Richmond Football Club have jointly funded research to “investigate the real and perceived blocks to women reaching the…

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