Let women be Enlightened

24 April 2009

The assassination of a leading Afghan women's rights activist, Sitara Achakzai, this month was yet another tragic reminder that equality between the sexes is far from accepted in the world today, writes Professor Helen Irving.

In an opinion piece in today's Sydney Morning Herald, Professor Irving writes that in Australia, as in the rest of the modern world, such rights and freedoms are taken for granted.

"We may fall short on measures of equality, such as pay scales or housework burdens, but the belief that women are inherently inferior is no longer acceptable.

"For such progress we are indebted to the Enlightenment, and above all, the ideas of Mary Wollstonecraft, the 250th anniversary of whose birth falls on Monday."

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