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Ginninderra Press

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Annette Elliot / Secret Secrets

  • Annette Elliot / Secret Secrets
Secret Secrets is a unique insight into the life of victims of domestic violence. Told through the story of how an ordinary woman factory worker, wife and mother of three defied the odds and squatted in a government-owned derelict house earmarked for demolition, to set up South Australia’s first feminist women’s shelter. Women flocked in. Back in those days, there were shelters for men and shelters for dogs but there were no shelters for women and their children. Women escaping from ‘wife bashing’, as it was called then, fled into the night without any certain course; they rambled the dark streets at night. Some slept in the open; the lucky ones stumbled to sleep under cold damp bridges and during the day lived on the streets. Others took flight from immediate violence and fled, found temporary night-time safety in neighbourhood backyards and school lunch sheds, then returned home next day. Annette was one of them. The women’s shelter Annette set up gave women like-minded companions and a new-found self-confidence. They united in mischief to fight back against sexist attitudes and male authority. They fought for better housing, and an improved social and welfare deal for women. Annette takes the reader into the world of those women’s stories, and their struggle for recognition of all women and children living with controlling domestic violence.
978 1 76041 798 7, 226pp