by Anne Summers
Sydney Morning Herald, 25 June 2010
Julia Gillard may have played down the significance of her sex when she became Australia’s first female prime minister yesterday, saying she “did not set out to crash my head against any glass ceilings” and pointing out that she was also the first redhead to lead the country. But there is no denying this moment of history.
Nor that it has taken Australia an inordinately long time to achieve it. Alone of the democracies in our region, our political leadership remained conspicuously male-dominated. India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Pakistan, the Philippines, South Korea and, of course, New Zealand have all had at least one woman head of government.