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

Younger Australians less likely to disapprove of coercive control 

The vast majority of Australians consider coercive control unacceptable, but only just over half of the population know what the term means.

Article Card Image

Democracy Sausage: Divided nation — the Voice vote explained

Researchers Nicholas Biddle and Valerie Cooms join the show to discuss new research on the referendum and why it was rejected at the polls.

Article Card Image

Voters rejected Voice due to fears of division: ANU study

Two-in-three Australians who voted ‘no’ to a Voice to Parliament said they rejected the proposed constitutional change because it would divide the nation.

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
Group of eight Australia Logo