Women and power (redux)

The new Turnbull cabinet announced on Sunday afternoon brings to five the number of women in cabinet. This has largely been celebrated as a significant increase in the number of women in the Abbott cabinet – notably in terms of the number of women now holding senior portfolios. That is to say, there is now a group of women who wield significant power in Australian government.

At the same time however, there has been discussion about which women have been appointed. Many have noted, for example, that Senator Cash says that she is not a feminist; and Senator Cash is the Minister for Women. The Foreign Minister, Julie Bishop has likewise brushed aside questions of whether or not she is feminist.

For those committed to the feminist project this may not represent the ideal pathway to structural change in government policy, but I maintain that more women at the table is important regardless.

Continue reading