Former prime minister Julia Gillard has reflected on the personal and global impact of her misogyny speech.

In 2012, then Prime Minister Julia Gillard became a global sensation when she stood in Parliament and railed against everyday misogyny in Australia.

Her words went viral and sparked conversations about the sexist treatment of female politicians around the globe.

Ms Gillard continues to inspire upcoming generations, who have transported her words onto TikTok.

Today, she also chairs the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership, which is based at King’s College London and includes a world-first sister node at The Australian National University (ANU). 

Director of the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership at ANU, Professor Michelle Ryan, said Ms Gillard’s misogyny speech “worked as a real catalyst for change”.

“It was a masterclass on how to sow the seeds needed for collective action: anger and rage, fostering solidarity, the need for allies, a vision for how things could be,” Professor Ryan said.

Earlier this month Ms Gillard was back in Australia to reflect on the personal and global impact of her words for a special live event.

“For a number of years, I felt like I was walking through the world always accompanied by an invisible companion,” Ms Gillard said.

“That the misogyny speech was constantly there, right alongside me.

“But now I feel differently because I have come to understand the misogyny speech isn’t my companion, it’s yours. You give it meaning and life today as an anthem of defiance as you navigate this world.”

Indira Naidoo (left) and Julia Gillard. Photo: Daniel Boud

The event also included an address from Professor Ryan.

“It was a privilege to share a stage with such strong activists in this space, and to be able to bring a research perspective to the events,” Professor Ryan said.

“And it was clear on the night, and from the reactions of the audience, that the speech was inspiring and empowering then, and continues to inspire and empower now.”

A digital stream of the event is now available for rent through Vimeo until 28 October.

Proceeds from the stream will be directed to support research by the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership at ANU.  

You may also like

Article Card Image

Democracy Sausage: Australia’s big chance with Jim Chalmers

Treasurer of Australia Jim Chalmers joins Mark Kenny and Marija Taflaga to discuss the future of Australia’s economy and society.

Article Card Image

How to create a country: a guide to making a micronation

Ever dreamed of starting your own country or want to understand how it’s been done by others? Here are the essentials of building a micronation.

Article Card Image

On her own terms: Jacinda Ardern steps down as New Zealand PM

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will leave behind a legacy as a progressive and compassionate leader.

Subscribe to ANU Reporter

Anu Logo

+61 2 6125 5111

The Australian National University, Canberra

CRICOS Provider: 00120C

ABN: 52 234 063 906

EDX Logo
APRU Logo
IARU Logo
Group of eight Australia Logo