By Orr, Elizabeth
This memoir spans a century of New Zealand life - public and private. It is a candid personal account of events of national significance as Elizabeth Orr - and this country - struggles to determine who we are and what we stand for. Elizabeth touches on issues of class, race, sex,... suburbia, politics, equality and ultimately spirituality and the environ ment, with disarming frankness. While we recognise her world, it is often un expected as she moves from Khandallah to a women's refuge; from ivory towers to the lives of women meatworkers; from academia to dry stone walling in Otaki. With Elizabeth, we come to a richer under standing of how we have become the New Zealanders we are, and the importance of the ongoing need to campaign for social justice.Read more
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Elizabeth Orr has made a long and distinguished contribution to the campaign for equal pay and pay equity for New Zealand women. The stories she tells in her memoir cover this - and many more aspects of her varied and colourful life. Born in Wellington in 1929, the daughter of controversial forester Pat Entrican, Elizabeth's early education was enlivened by stints on backblocks farms. At university she mixed with talented literary personalities and future lawmakers; she married Gordon Orr, later Secretary for Justice and a member of the Waitangi Tribunal. In 1966 Elizabeth led a delegation to government to establish the National Advisory Council for the Employment of Women. She helped set the terms for the Commission on Equal Pay and saw the 1972 Equal Pay Act put in place. In the 1990s Elizabeth became the first female chancellor of Victoria University, combining university duties with building stone walls, conserving stands of native bush and creating an 18th-century style country garden at the family property near Otaki.
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