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Wendy McCarthy Talks Advocacy & Leadership

Educator, activist, agent of change - the life and career of one of Australia's most influential women.

We are thrilled Wendy McCarthy will join us for the next season of In The Spirit Of Things Conversations, talking her new book 'Don't be too polite girls.'

Wendy McCarthy has made her mark on this country in many extraordinary ways. For more than 50 years, she has been on the leading edge of feminism and corporate and public life in Australia and her trail-blazing advocacy and leadership have made her a widely respected and revered figure. Wendy is a woman who shaped her times as much as she was shaped by them, and now at 80 years of age, she shares her remarkable life and achievements, and the lessons she learned - and taught us all. From sheltered country schoolgirl to relentless campaigner for abortion and contraception, from passionate teacher to lifelong advocate for education, to smashing that glass ceiling again and again and showing the way to subsequent generations of women, Wendy has championed change across the public, private and community sectors, in education, family planning, human rights, public health, overseas aid and development, conservation, heritage, media and the Arts. Don't be Too Polite, Girls is a personal and political memoir about life, love, family and politics - as experienced by Wendy over eight decades. As she says, 'My story is about a determined country girl who was the first in my family to go to university. It is the story of how my generation of women changed Australia. We fought to have our voices heard and imagined a different Australia: an Australia in which girls had the opportunity to complete secondary education, where women who had missed out on education had a second chance. An Australia where there was equal pay, and universal access to safe contraception and abortion. Where childcare and early learning was accessible and affordable. Where a mantra of political action for women could be "A woman's place is in the House and in the Senate".' This inspiring and enlightening memoir is filled with cautionary tales and insider stories about being female in Australia - as well as a few helpful survival tips. Above all, as Wendy has done over decades of feminist activism, it encourages the reader to find her voice and listen to it.

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