A Decade of The Dawn

Australia's first feminist journal turns 10 on Trove

Published on 15 May 1888, the first edition of The Dawn: A Journal for Australian Women opens with a quote from Tennyson who said "women is not uncompleted man, but diverse". The article then goes on to say:

'being diverse why should she not have her journal in which her divergent hopes, aims, and opinions may have representation'.

A fitting beginning for a journal that gave Australian women a voice for the first time and that went on to be recognised as Australia's first feminist journal.

This year, on International Women's Day (8 March), we celebrated the 10-year anniversary of the digitisation of The Dawn, which saw these words become publicly available online via Trove.

Published between 1888-1905, The Dawn featured stories ranging from the evils of corsetry to the campaign for women’s suffrage. Proprietress, printer and publisher, Louisa Lawson also exclusively employed women, from the typesetters to printers - something that was unheard of for the time.

Funding for the journal's digitisation was contributed by Donna Benjamin and 'Digitise The Dawn' supporters.

Read The Dawn: A Journal for Australian Women on Trove