[Truncated] My thesis traces the history of women municipal councillors in Western Australia, from the election of the first woman councillor in 1920, until 1999. There have been few studies of women's representation in local government in Australia, despite their increasing presence. Women councillors face many of the same challenges as their female parliamentary colleagues, but there are significant aspects of their experience that are unique to local government. In addition, as my thesis shows, Western Australia is a vast and diverse state and its municipalities, and the experiences of their women councillors, reflect this diversity. My thesis aims to redress both the gender-bias of previous research on local government in Western Australia and the marginalisation of women councillors in research on women elected representatives in Australia. Local government is often dismissed as conservative, parochial and lacking autonomy. While each of these stereotypes may be applied to local government to varying degrees, I argue that such an ahistorical assessment obscures the nature of Western Australian local government in the latter part of the twentieth century. Local government responds to and is shaped by local conditions.
|Qualification||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Publication status||Unpublished - 2000|
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