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WomanGoing Places

A social enterprise advocating for economic security and social inclusion of Australian women aged 50+.

We campaign against the discrimination and general invisibility women 50+ face.
We spotlight the growing number facing impoverishment and homelessness.

We tells the stories of women 50+ who are re-defining how women age.

Support us to remain accessible to all women and to grow our advocacy.

SUBSCRIBE HERE to receive latest posts in your inbox.

SUPPORT Choose HERE the amount you wish to contribute.

What we are talking about…

Dr. Lowitja O’Donoghue: Against All Odds

We need to take the time to reflect on the heroism of Dr. Lowitja O’Donoghue who passed away on 4 February aged 91.

Consider the odds against her.

She was stolen from her Aboriginal mother when she was only two years old in 1932.
Lowitja was stolen from her siblings and her extended family.
Her identity was stolen from her when she was forcibly placed in a mission home, her name anglicised.
Her heritage and her culture were stolen from her as she was prohibited from speaking her own language and removed from contact with her mother or with any Indigenous community.
Her agency was stolen from her as she was left alone and powerless.
Her education and prospects were stolen from her as she was trained for a life of servitude.
Her sense of self worth was stolen from her as she was repeatedly told by the matron of the home that she would never amount to anything.

And yet.

Against impossible odds, Lowitja O’Donoghue took her place as a truly great Australian woman.
February 9, 2024/by Augustine Zycher

Why Is The Israel-Hamas War Different From Other Wars?

The Hamas-Israel war that began on October 7 2023 is a war different from other wars in the modern era. It is a war in which women are a strategic target.  It is a war spearheaded by sexual violence. Female casualties are not ‘collateral damage’, the unintended consequences of war. They were designated by Hamas as military and political objectives.

Since Hamas launched its assault on Israel on October 7, it has succeeded in winning multiple victories despite not winning any military victory.

Its victories stem from its use and abuse of women.

Israel’s losses stem in part from its failure to listen to women.
January 21, 2024/by Augustine Zycher
Press Conference of Families of Israeli Hostages on Day 59 of the War. "Time has run out for the hostages - they have no time left, no food and no air".

The Power of the People

October 7th had a transformative impact on Israeli society. But it was probably not the impact that Hamas had intended when it launched its meticulously planned massacre of 1200 Israeli civilians and the taking of 240 hostages. A key element of the Hamas plan was the assault on Israeli women and girls. “The torture of women was weaponized to destroy communities, to destroy a people, to destroy a nation,” said Cochav Elkayam Levy, the head of a nongovernmental commission investigating crimes of murder, rape, sexual atrocities, beheading and mutilation perpetrated by Hamas. 

But instead of destroying a nation, it unleashed a dramatic upsurge in ‘the power of the people’ civic activism and an intensification of solidarity amongst Israelis. 
December 5, 2023/by Augustine Zycher

The Moral Clarity of Marcia Langton

Indigenous leader, Professor Marcia Langton, has expressed once again the moral clarity at the core of courageous leadership in her article on the Hamas-Israeli war.

“ The loss of thousands of lives in Gaza is unjustifiable. I condemn Hamas. I am horrified and deeply saddened by the loss of lives in the Levant, the Israelis who were murdered and kidnapped by Hamas and the innocent Palestinians who are being used as human shields by Hamas.

As an Indigenous Australian, I can have little effect in stopping these horrors but it is necessary to be clear about a few matters.

'Blak sovereignty' advocates have entwined two extraordinary propositions - one that is simply untrue and one that is a moral outrage.

Our Jewish and Palestinian communities deserve respect and compassion. "
November 17, 2023/by Augustine Zycher

The Sophisticated Strategy of Barbarism

The Hamas attack on Israel on October 7th, had been meticulously planned for over a year. It was the expression of a sophisticated strategy designed to implement barbarism as a means of achieving Hamas’ political goals. The primary goal of Hamas, as part of  the regional alliance led by Iran and its other proxies Hezbollah and the Houthis, is to bring permanent war to all Israel’s borders in order to " annihilate Israel ".   

The timing was targeted to shatter a trilateral deal between the U.S, Saudi Arabia and Israel to normalise relations and change the face of the Middle East. 

There are 5 key elements to the Hamas strategy of barbarism.
November 9, 2023/by Augustine Zycher

Older Women – Targets of Hamas

Never before have I had to tell the stories of older women designated as targets for terrorism and hostage taking. This is what happened in Israel on October 7th. Older women were not the only target of Hamas, but they were a deliberate target.

There were many older Israeli women amongst the 1,400 massacred on that day. There are also many older women amongst the estimated 250 hostages Hamas took to Gaza. Whole groups of 80 year-olds were abducted.

The New York Times reported that Hamas documents at the scenes of the massacres revealed that it was a meticulously planned assault with precisely designated targets. The objective of the heavily armed Hamas militia was not to battle with Israeli soldiers. It was to kill as many civilians as possible, in their homes and at the music festival, and take large numbers as hostages.
October 19, 2023/by Augustine Zycher

Whose Intergenerational Tragedy?

It is hard to forget the cries of “intergenerational tragedy” that greeted the latest Intergenerational Report released by Treasurer Jim Chalmers. The lively reaction to a potential “tragedy” in Australia in 40 years time stands in sharp contrast to the failure to deal with Australia’s present generational tragedy unfolding in real time.

The problem is not just the alarmist nature of the IGR with regard to the ageing population. It is that the IGR reflects the ageist thinking of governments and society in general. Older generations are seen as a threat to national wellbeing. They are calculated as a national liability and an unbearable burden on future budgets.

The countries that will be the most successful with ‘generational change’ will be the ones that provide the best integration and opportunities for older people. Put that in an Intergenerational Report, Treasurer.
September 13, 2023/by Augustine Zycher

Mutual Obligations & Women

'Mutual obligations’ imposed on jobseekers are a rank misuse of public funds, ineffectual, and crippling in their consequences. The majority of those on Jobseeker are women aged over 50, so ‘mutual obligations’ affect them most.

Rick Morton of The Saturday Paper disclosed that outsourced employment services providers are funnelling more than $40 million a year “in government funding earmarked for jobseekers through their own companies, related entities and labour-hire outfits, creating paper empires out of their impoverished clients.”
August 28, 2023/by Augustine Zycher
Professor-Lyn-Slater-Accidental-Icon

999 Names for an Old Woman

Google offers over 999 words to describe an old woman, and they are uniformly pejorative. The top 4 are: “ distressingly ancient; squat and dumpy; dismal and lonesome; insanely suicidal.”

Some common names for old women are: old bag, granny, biddy, crone, hag, witch, harridan, bedlam, old bat, old boiler. And if that’s not bad enough, you can also resort to descriptions such as: “withered and bitter; almost well-dressed; unnaturally lusty; crazy and uncanny; entirely uninteresting; exceptionally invaluable.”

What’s in a name, you may ask. The answer is – a minefield. Language reflects and reinforces prejudice and discrimination and has terrible consequences. Arguably, there is a direct link between this gendered ageism and the social crisis that Australian older women are now experiencing. It is a multi-faceted crisis that is distinctive to this demographic. It negatively affects their employment, housing, livelihood, and mental and physical health. Older women are ending up on the dust heap of the nation's economy.
August 21, 2023/by Augustine Zycher

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WomanGoing Places

A social enterprise advocating for economic security and social inclusion of Australian women aged 50+.

We campaign against the discrimination and general invisibility women 50+ face.
We spotlight the growing number facing impoverishment and homelessness.

We tells the stories of women 50+ who are re-defining how women age.

Support us to remain accessible to all women and to grow our advocacy.

SUBSCRIBE HERE to receive latest posts in your inbox.

SUPPORT Choose HERE the amount you wish to contribute.

Stories of Australian Women

Leading Australian women share their favourite stories

WomanGoingPlaces interviews Professor Kim Rubenstein

Professor Kim Rubenstein has become a popular guest on programs such as Q&A because she clearly articulates how the Australian Constitution impacts on the most important issues we face as a nation and as individuals. So when she announced in August the she had formed her own political party, Kim For Canberra, and would run for the Senate, her candidacy was welcomed by many. 

WomanGoingPlaces has a special interest in spotlighting the stories of Australian women aged 50+ and so we interviewed Professor Rubenstein recently on her candidacy, goals and vision.
September 19, 2021/by Augustine Zycher

Michelle Garnaut – My Top 5 Places in Australia

For centuries, empires, governments and global companies have vied with each other in displays of wealth, grandeur and power along the Bund in Shanghai. For close to a quarter of a century, one Australian woman has maintained her position on the Bund with no power other than the power of her reputation.

Michelle Garnaut, CEO of the M Restaurant Group, has established restaurants and lounges that have pioneered independent fine dining in both China and Hong Kong.
December 9, 2017/by Augustine Zycher

Rosie Batty AO – My Top 5 Places in Australia

Rosie Batty made Australia listen.

Her son, Luke aged 11, was with his father playing cricket in the park when his father walked over to him and killed him.
In expressing her personal grief, Rosie compelled us to see that family violence was our business. She made us see that the plight of thousands of women and children could one day be our plight, or that of someone close to us.
September 11, 2017/by Augustine Zycher

Maureen Wheeler – My Top 5 Places In Australia

Maureen Wheeler AO is a pioneer of landmark enterprises in both travel and in the cultural life of Melbourne.

She was the co-founder, with her husband Tony, of Lonely Planet books - guides as indispensable to travellers as their backpacks or suitcases.
Maureen was also the co-founder of the Wheeler Centre in Melbourne. This centre for books, writing and ideas played a critical role in Melbourne achieving its status as a UNESCO designated City of Literature.
April 21, 2017/by Augustine Zycher

Fabian Dattner – My Top 5 Places in Australia

" You have to have a beard to be a leader in Antarctica." It was this statement that sparked the indignation and the imagination of Fabian Dattner and led to an unprecedented expedition of 75 women scientists to Antarctica.
February 17, 2017/by Augustine Zycher

Maestro Simone Young – My Top 5 Places in Australia

Maestro Simone Young AM is one of the world’s great opera and concert orchestra conductors. She has been called a ‘superconductor’, a conductor whose elegance and power, strength and sensitivity on the podium inspire her orchestra. She is a highly esteemed interpreter of the works of Wagner and Strauss, Mahler, Bruckner and Brahms, as well as those of contemporary composers.
July 4, 2016/by Rosalie Zycher

Polixeni Papapetrou – My Top 5 Places in Australia

When photographic artist Polixeni Papapetrou chose her 5 favourite places to visit in Australia, they were not just travel destinations. They were landscapes that captured her imagination and inspired her to transform them into her art. Dramatically beautiful, they are insightful and unsettling works.
July 3, 2016/by Augustine Zycher

Professor Marcia Langton AO – My Top 5 Places in Australia

Professor Marcia Langton AM is an anthropologist and geographer and holds the Foundation Chair of Australian Indigenous Studies at the University of Melbourne. She is a strong Indigenous leader with an unwavering commitment to achieve justice for her people.
May 27, 2016/by Augustine Zycher

Janette Jeffrey – My Top 5 Places in Australia

Janette Jeffrey has broken 7 World Records as a Masters Swimmer from 2015 -2016.
She also holds 9 National records in freestyle and breaststroke in her age group 65-69 years. That's just in the swimming pool.
In ocean swims she was the female wInner of the Cousins Travel Open Water 'Ocean' swim series 2016/17 in 60-69 age group. She has won her age group of the prestigious Lorne Pier to Pub race nine times.
But her picture made no front pages, and you have probably never heard of her.
If young sportswomen have great difficulty getting any coverage in mainstream media, it is almost impossible for older women competing in Masters events to do so.
December 2, 2015/by Augustine Zycher

Professor Gillian Triggs – My Top 5 Places in Australia

Gillian Triggs, Chair of Justice Connect, won enormous respect for her courage and fortitude in defence of human rights in her previous position as President of the Australian Human Rights Commission. This despite being subjected to unprecedented attacks and pressure from government ministers and their representatives.

Professor Triggs was catapulted into national headlines when she released a report on children in immigration detention. Tony Abbott, the then Prime Minister, Attorney-General George Brandis, and the then Immigration Minister Scott Morrison declared that the report was biased, that they had lost confidence in her and that she should resign.
November 13, 2015/by Augustine Zycher

Anne Summers – My Top 5 Places in Australia

Anne Summers AO can be described as someone who is always in the vanguard as a feminist, journalist, author, editor and publisher.

Now that the issue of domestic violence is on the national agenda, we recall that 41 years ago, Anne Summers lead the charge into an abandoned building in Sydney and co-founded Elsie, the first women’s refuge in Australia.
October 30, 2015/by Augustine Zycher

Renata Singer – My Top 5 Places in Australia

“ There are no signposts for women as they get older, “ says Renata Singer, author of the newly published book ‘Older and Bolder Life after 60 ’.

Throughout their lives, women have followed all the usual signposts - going to school, university, entering a profession, having a job, getting married, having children, often going back to work. But when they hit their 60s, this generation of women enters unknown territory. Retirement, isolation, and babysitting the grandchildren, are not attractive signposts for them.
October 14, 2015/by Augustine Zycher

SUBSCRIBE/SUPPORT

WomanGoing Places

A social enterprise advocating for economic security and social inclusion of Australian women aged 50+.

We campaign against the discrimination and general invisibility women 50+ face.
We spotlight the growing number facing impoverishment and homelessness.

We tells the stories of women 50+ who are re-defining how women age.

Support us to remain accessible to all women and to grow our advocacy.

SUBSCRIBE HERE to receive latest posts in your inbox.

SUPPORT Choose HERE the amount you wish to contribute.

Places

Our Top Places in Japan

WomanGoingPlaces has chosen some of the places we saw as first-time visitors to Japan that became our Top Places in Japan.
These are to be found on 4 different islands of Japan - Honshu, Miyajima, Hokkaido and Shikoku. The choices are arranged according to islands and not in order of favourites.
March 3, 2017/by Rosalie Zycher

Hokkaido – the Northern Island of Japan

Hokkaido, the northernmost of Japan’s main islands gives you a sense of space, of wilderness and of untamed nature, thanks largely to its many national parks and large stretches of uninhabited spaces. In winter, it becomes a wonderland of ice and snow and people flock to its ski resorts. Autumn arrives earlier in Hokkaido than in the rest of Japan, so you are more likely to see the turning of the leaves here first. Of all the wonderful sights and attractions of Hokkaido, its volcanoes and natural hot springs, are the most impressive.
January 27, 2017/by Rosalie Zycher

Japan’s Brilliant Bullet Train

Remarkably, Japanese trains have an annual average late arrival time of only 38 seconds!
The bullet train or Shinkansen that connects major centres, is a marvel. Travelling at up to 300km per hour, this sleek, white, green or red serpent of a train is whisper quiet and provides a smooth ride when you are inside. Outside, it appears as a rush of wind if you’re lucky enough to catch it passing at full speed.
January 24, 2017/by Rosalie Zycher

The Pleasures of a Japanese Toilet

The pleasures of the Japanese toilet are gaining worldwide attention. The BBC in its news today, made an announcement about toilets in Japan. And recently the New York Times ran a feature story on Japanese toilets. Why toilets would qualify as news might puzzle many - but it would not surprise those who have been to Japan.
Japanese toilets are quite ingenious.
January 19, 2017/by Rosalie Zycher

Ryokans in Japan

Ryokans in Japan have been described as national treasures. These traditional inns for travellers are located throughout the country. You can stay in Western-style hotels throughout Japan, but you would be missing out on very memorable and pleasurable experiences by not staying in a ryokan. Many hotels also offer you a choice of Western or Japanese-style rooms. The latter are similar to a room in a ryokan. These rooms tend to be larger than Western-style rooms which are often tiny.
January 13, 2017/by Rosalie Zycher

Onsen in Japan

Japan’s ubiquitous volcanoes frequently cause land and sea to shudder. But they are also the source of the healing waters of the Onsen, the public bath houses all over Japan that are often supplied with mineral water drawn from hot springs in volcanic craters.
Onsen have been part of Japanese life for millennia.
And one of the great delights of visiting Japan is staying in ryokans - traditional inns - with Onsen.
January 6, 2017/by Augustine Zycher

Geisha in Kyoto, Japan

Kyoto is the centre of Japan’s Geisha culture. There are almost 200 Geiko (Geisha) in Kyoto, making it the largest concentration in Japan. It is hard to find a Western equivalent for this exclusive profession. It combines the rigorous training and discipline of an elite ballet school and music academy, with the self-renunciation of a nunnery. Exquisitely costumed Geiko are sometimes seen along the narrow streets in the Gion quarter. Meeting a Maiko, a young woman in apprenticeship to become a Geiko, was one of the most memorable events of our time in Japan.
January 2, 2017/by Augustine Zycher

Autumn in Japan

WomanGoingPlaces chose to go to Japan in autumn in order to see the beauty of the autumn leaves.
Spring in Japan is a very popular time to visit because of the beauty of the cherry blossoms.
But it is also very brief. So it is hard to time your trip with any certainly of seeing blossom.
You will have better luck with autumn foliage.
December 23, 2016/by Augustine Zycher

Notes on Japan

WomanGoingPlaces visited Japan for the first time this year. As did 20 million other visitors. And with the summer Olympic Games scheduled for Tokyo in 2020, this number is expected to soar with many more travelling to see the marvellous sights and rich experiences that Japan can offer.
December 22, 2016/by Augustine Zycher

Kakadu National Park – Jarrangbarnmi (Koolpin Gorge), Northern Territory

I had asked my daughter Genevieve, who lives in Darwin and works in surrounding Aboriginal communities, to take me to one of her favourite spots. She had heard of Jarrangbarnmi from friends and as it was a sacred site she thought it would be an ideal place to go to with her mum and sister Anna. I had always wanted to visit a sacred site as I am interested in Aboriginal culture and ways of relating to the environment.
October 24, 2016/by Rosalie Zycher

Donald Trump and “Crooked Hag” Hillary

Donald Trump’s lewdness towards young women has caused an uproar that looks set to end his chances of winning the presidency. By contrast, his attacks against Hillary as an older woman have barely drawn a murmur. Trump and his supporters have conducted a vicious campaign against Hillary using her age as a weapon against her. As though being an older woman is contemptible. They have played on negative stereotypes of old women and used scary, nursery rhyme images of witch-like women. “Crooked hag” is just the latest double-barrelled epithet they have hurled at her.
October 14, 2016/by Augustine Zycher