The Fifth Estate
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Two years ago, for a small window of time, Australia had a female prime minister, attorney-general, governor-general, finance minister and four other senior ministers. Today there is just one woman in the federal cabinet – foreign minister Julie Bishop – and when she is away, there are none.
How is this possible in a modern representative democracy? What did we learn about the treatment of women in Australian public life from the rise and fall of Julia Gillard? And what is the personal cost for women in politics?
To discuss Julia Gillard’s time as prime minister, and to look more broadly at women with power in politics and public life, Fifth Estate host Sally Warhaft is joined by two formidable guests, Gold Walkley Award-winning journalist and former state government minister Mary Delahunty, author of the newly released Gravity: Inside the PM’s office during her last year and final days, and bestselling author and journalist Anne Summers AO.
Sally Warhaft is a Melbourne broadcaster, anthropologist and writer and the host of the Wheeler Centre’s live journalism series, the Fifth Estate, now in its sixth year. She is a former editor of the Monthly magazine and the author of the bestselling book Well May We Say: The Speeches that Made Australia.
Mary Delahunty is a Gold Walkley Award winning journalist and presenter with ABC TV and commercial networks. She served for 7 years as a Victorian state government minister in senior portfolios and has seen the tensions from both sides. She is currently working as a consultant in government, media and the non-for profit sector where she heads numerous boards.
Dr Anne Summers AO is a best-selling author, journalist and thought-leader with a long career in politics, the media, business and the non-government sector in Australia, Europe and the United States. She is author of nine books, including the classic Damned Whores and God's Police, Ducks on the Pond, The Lost Mother, and The Misogyny Factor.
Sally Warhaft has been the Wheeler Centre’s in-house news anchor since 2012. In 2018 – over 100 episodes in – the anthropologist, broadcaster and intrepid interviewer’s fortnightly live series continues, as she responds to the most important debates of the day and reignites stories that have fallen off the front pages.
Every second Tuesday, Sally hosts a dizzying array of guests from the worlds of politics, culture, international relations and beyond, in a witty and revealing analysis of current affairs. It’s an event series and a live podcast taping rolled into one. Topical guests are announced in the weeks prior to events: keep an eye on our website (or in the Wheeler Weekly) for updates.
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