The Dawn Chorus

Fresh Australian Feminism

The Chorus

Looking for some background information on the individual Dawn Choristers?
You’ve come to the right place! Read on to learn more about the people who create the multilayered harmonies of The Dawn Chorus.

Editor-In-Chief: Clem
Contributing Editor: Mel
Senior Contributor: Cate
Senior Contributor: Caitlin
Contributor: Leah
Contributor: Hannah
Contributor: Rhiana
Contributor: Sara
Contributor: Daphne
Contributor: Talia

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* Editor-In-Chief: Clem
Clem’s formative feminist moment consisted of, at the age of about six, marvelling at Glynis Johns’ vivacious rendition of Sister Suffragette in Mary Poppins. She learned not to trust the media when in Grade Three her teacher read the class a feature article (in the local newspaper) about a classmate who was taking ballroom dancing; “I like it better than chocolate ice-cream!” read the teacher – and her classmate leapt to her feet and shouted “I did not say that!” When not pointing out the sexism inherent in major news outlets’ use of questionable stock photos, Clem also writes for The Age, Inpress and jmag, and is the Associate Editor of Defamer Australia. Clem is particularly interested in dismantling the sexism inherent in the music industry, where she spends most of her time. Some “further reading” from Clem’s feminist rock crit files includes:
Sex Thing (The Age, 2005), Thinkin’ Pink (The Age, 2006) and Taking The Long Way Around (SMH.com.au, 2007).


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* Contributing Editor: Mel
Mel is a Melbourne journalist, editor, cultural commentator and publisher of the online magazine The Enthusiast. Her friends maintain she is a hipster, which she denies – but then a hipster would. Previously pop culture editor of alt-fash-mag YEN, deputy editor of yoof music magazine jmag and a co-founder of quixotic poster-magazine Is Not Magazine, Mel maintains a personal weblog, A Wild Young Under-Whimsy, a fashion research weblog, Footpath Zeitgeist, and writes on music, fashion, advertising, media and social trends. She enjoys drinking tea in copious quantities, shopping in discount department stores and fast-fashion outlets, and fulminating against poor sub-editing.

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* Contributor: Cate
Cate is a 30 something Ms from Brunswick, Victoria. She has worked in education for nearly a decade and when not at work, she enjoys drinking mulled wine, vintage goods, growing veggies and listening to talking books. She runs a small business called Polka Dot Rabbit. Cate has been into feminism since she can remember and has been involved in various escapades over the years such as the “I Love My Cunt” campaign of 2004, volunteering in crisis counselling for women for several years, various actions against Right To Lifers and the production of a 2007 Federal Election colouring-in book. She has a big interest in mental health and is currently running free craft workshops for women who have experienced mental health issues.
http://rabbitwithpolkadots.blogspot.com/
http://greenrenters.blogspot.com/

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* Contributor: Caitlin
Caitlinate is an aging diplomat who enjoys her monthly blue rinse, long walks through the media, elections and blaming the patriarchy. She smokes more cigarettes than is good for her health but thinks the patriarchy is worse for it. Her dislikes include violence against women – in particular rape, trafficking and general objectification. She rants a lot about racism, poverty, war, mental health, politics, safe(r) spaces and any other topic she can get her hands on. Oh, did i mention the patriarchy? Her likes include dreaming of jetpacks and grassroots activism. Sometimes she takes photographs, rarely does she leave her beloved internet. More enraged typing can be found at caitlinate.blogspot.com.

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* Contributor: Leah
Leah works in the international development field. Her number one feminist concern is that 70% of the world’s poor are female. She got rid of her TV three years ago and highly recommends it – never seeing manipulative TV cosmetics advertising has done her the world of good.

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* Contributor: Hannah
Hannah is a third year multimedia/media studies student who enjoys reading, writing and grammatical correctness. It was in the warm Spring of 2007, while writing an essay discussing various potential feminist readings of Wife Swap, that she had her epiphany. Suddenly she began to comprehend the multihued variety of feminist strands and ways of critiquing popular culture from a lass’s perspective. Previously, she just thought all feminists were angry, bra-less and hairy-legged. Programs such as The Farmer Wants a Wife and Girls of the Playboy Mansion are now amongst her favourites. Oh, and Supermarket Sweep.

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* Contributor: Rhiana
Growing up in a house where women outnumbered men six to one, Rhiana remembers questioning traditional gender roles from a very young age, and although her battle to grant girls equal rights in delivering the morning papers was sadly lost to the owner of a local newsagent who simply replied that: “Only boys can do a paper run”, his reaction only made her question why? She has recently completed her BA at the University of Melbourne, and is one of its last students to be able to complete a major in Gender Studies. Unlike Glyn Davis and Co. she sees Gender Studies and feminism as more important than ever, and believes that feminist debate (although not necessarily a unified feminism) is integral to the advancements of women’s rights globally. Rhiana believes that feminism should never be a dirty word.

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* Contributor: Sara
Working as a waitress for the male haut monde at an elite, no-women-allowed gentlemen’s club in Melbourne, Sara is pitifully reminded every day of why feminism is just as important now as it was in the first wave. Sara is in her last year at the University of Melbourne, completing a BA majoring in English Literature and with a strong focus on Gender Studies. Originally from New Zealand, but having spent twelve of her formative years in Singapore, she is especially interested in studies of cultural globalisation (in particular the globalisation of sexualities) and feminism across cultural paradigms and diasporas. She plans to undertake a Masters degree in Social Work in 2009. When she isn’t studying or pouring champagne for the upper crust, Sara can probably be found writing grotesque fiction, attempting to play numerous musical instruments or scouting for miniature owl figurines to add to her collection of over two hundred that were left in her possession after her grandmother’s death.

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* Contributor: Daphne
Daphne completed a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Melbourne in 2007, majoring in gender studies and literature. Queer theory, uncovering histories of feminisms, and cultural (particularly filmic) representations of gender were keenly explored areas of discourse. She is involved in an ever-increasing list of bands and other musical collaborations, as well as writing her own music under the moniker of Hadrian Valentine. Additionally she occasionally freelances as a makeup artist. Currently Daphne is bracing herself for a possible foray into gender-related postgraduate study…
http://www.myspace.com/hadrianvalentine

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* Contributor: Talia
Talia is 25 and works for the government. She feels passionate about uniting women as opposed to the world we live in, in which we are encouraged, from day one, to compete with each other for men, jobs, and more. Her earliest “feminist” moment occurred at school where she bailed up a very conservative Christian in her school hallway and asked her, “Do you realise in the Bible it says for women to OBEY their husband? You can’t seriously believe that!” Talia was mortified when faced with that verse in the Bible; she had actually dabbled in church and the local youth group because she had friends who were involved but she always questioned the role of women in church; the Christian views seemed terribly archaic. Talia can remember the response of church members being: “Women are equal, they just have different roles”. Puh-lease.

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One Response to “The Chorus”

  1. Mel Campbell said

    I should have put in my bio that I once got Cate to write “Cunt Power” on my arm – it was a costume for a party at which I was dressed as the lesbian bridesmaid who makes the other guests feel uncomfortable about their heterosexual privilege.

 
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