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Secret War Stories
Code: 232  |  Type: Panel   |  Genres: , History, Feminism, Politics & Current Affairs
Sunday, May 20 2012 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM Free, no bookings
Bangarra Mezzanine, Pier 4/5, Hickson Road, Walsh Bay Venue & Transport Info
Laura Soares Abrantes, Isabel Sequeira, Meredith Burgmann (facilitator)
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On this, the anniversary of independence for East Timor, two women reveal the role women played fighting with the men in the country’s resistance to occupation by Indonesia. Laura Soares Abrantes and Isabel “Beba” Sequeira have compiled a book of women’s oral histories, wanting to gain recognition from their government of the role women played in achieving self-determination. They talk to Meredith Burgmann.

Laura Soares Abrantes (International)

Laura Soares Abrantes was active in the Timorese resistance, gathering information about Indonesian human rights violations and sending it out of the country, both as a student in Java and with women’s organisation Fokupers in Dili. She has contributed to all the published books on Timorese women from 1999 to the present, either as a storyteller, story collector or editor. Laura’s latest publications include Secrecy: The key to independence and Step by Step: Women of East Timor.

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Isabel Sequeira (International)

Isabel ‘Beba’ Sequeira’s family were involved in the Timorese clandestine movement, leading to her being interrogated by the Indonesian military while a chair was ground into her foot. She tells her story in Step by Step: Women of East Timor. After the referendum in 1999, Beba helped establish a women’s organisation - APSC-TL - that supports women veterans, provides scholarships to young women, and collects and publishes women’s stories, the latest being Secrecy: The key to independence.

Also appearing at...
Meredith Burgmann (Australian)

Dr Meredith Burgmann is a former president of the NSW Legislative Council. She was an industrial relations academic for 20 years and an MP for 16 years. She is the co-author (with Verity Burgmann) of a book about early environmentalism, Green Bans, Red Union and a book on misogyny (with Yvette Andrews, The Ernies Book. She is presently editing a book in which well-known Australians write about their ASIO files.