PRIME Minister Julia Gillard told reporters at a Foreign Correspondents’ Association lunch in Sydney that there had been uncomfortable moments in Australia’s journey to accepting a female leader.
Ms Gillard added seeing someone other than a “man in a suit” on the news was something that Australians were probably still getting used to.
Ms Gillard addressed the Association on the economy and the Asian century, as well as answering questions on her planned trip to China.
Journalists present at the talk asked about the hostility of some of the media and politicians towards her.
Ms Gillard said: “I’ve been very clear as Prime Minister that when I see old-fashioned attitudes, close-minded attitudes, when I see sexism, when I see misogyny I’ll be very clear about calling it out and naming it for what it is.”
Ms Gillard added that there had been forward progress in society and spoke optimistically of the future.
“Having had the first female Prime Minister is it’s going to be easier for the second and then it’s going to be easier again for the third, and then everybody will get over it and forget about it and no-one will even bother to comment anymore whether the images of leadership in our nation that particular year are images of female leadership or male leadership.”
The Prime Minister made international headlines last October for her fiery speech in Parliament questioning the misogynistic attitudes of Opposition Leader Tony Abbott and accusing him of sexism.