Is Australia really easy going and egalitarian?

Essay by LuciWhiteUniversity, Bachelor'sB-, September 2004

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Lucianne White

Assessment 2

Approaches to Social Science


Australians regard themselves as easygoing and egalitarian and yet the Australian

society continues to marginalise certain groups. Women are one of these

marginalised groups. The struggle for equal rights for women has been an ongoing

struggle for humanity. Along the way, many complications and roadblocks have

arisen. Media, beauty standards, and the meaning of womanhood were some of the


Women still face many issues to try and be treated fairly or equal to

their male counterparts. Even with the progress made by the feminist movement,

women are still left behind in the political and economic arenas. In this essay I will

endeavour to present to you three things. Firstly I will present an overview of

women historically. Secondly, where women are currently in the political and

economic arenas. Thirdly what we can do to try and make this country fairer in

these situations.

I will also give you a definition of two very important terms,

sexism and patriachy, as they are both essential to understanding why women have

been treated so unfairly.


Patriachy is a form of society in which men have all the power and women have

none. (Wignall, P 2000).

Sexism is similar to the dynamics of racism. Males are believed to be superior to

females and when this belief is put into action it leads to females being treated as

objects, the last to be hired, first to be fired, being paid less for equal work, etc.



History is 'the study of the past through documents or other written (and sometimes

visual and oral records) kept in state libraries, individuals' homes or by

organisations'. (Bulbeck 1993, p. 459)

Hunt and Colander (1999, p. 10) argue that when history '...[systematically]

attempt[s] to learn about and...