The Wheeler Centre
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Soraya Chemaly: Rage Becomes Her
'Women and girls associate anger with powerlessness because that’s really how we tend to experience it. Power does not accrue to us when we’re angry because we are punished for transgressing in this way that is counter, usually, to gender expectations.'
Women are taught from girlhood to suppress anger. But US-based writer and activist Soraya Chemaly believes embracing and channelling women’s anger is key to gender equality and freedom.
Her new book, Rage Becomes Her, examines the subtle and not-so-subtle social mechanisms by which female anger is stymied and redirected throughout the course of women's lives. It also investigates the costs of this: to individual women, to particular groups of women, to all women and to all of society. It's a book that looks at parenting, reproductive rights, women’s health, #metoo and political participation – proposing anger as a potential tool for practical change.
Rage Becomes Her is a battle cry, backed up by meticulous research. At the Wheeler Centre, she joins Amy Gray in conversation.
Soraya Chemaly is an award-winning writer and activist whose work focuses on the role of gender in culture, politics, religion, and media. She is the Director of the Women’s Media Center Speech Project and an advocate for women’s freedom of expression and expanded civic and political engagement. A prolific writer and speaker, her articles appear in Time, the Verge, the Guardian, the Nation, HuffPost, and the Atlantic.
Amy Gray is a freelance writer and author. She writes on politics, feminism and culture. Her work has appeared in the Age, the Guardian, Sydney Morning Herald, Saturday Paper and other publications. Amy is currently writing a book about motherhood and feminism.