Australian Women's Register

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Eva Cox interviewed by Ann Mari Jordens [sound recording]

Eva Cox interviewed by Ann Mari Jordens [sound recording]
National Library of Australia Oral History Collection
Date Range

4 digital audio tapes (228 min.) Cox speaks of her comfortable middle-class Jewish family in Vienna, Austria; her mother Ruth nee Kantor, a final year medical student, and of her father, Richard Jakob Hauser, a business man; in March 1939 her mother fled with her to England as a refugee, and her father joined the British Army in Palestine; other relatives took refuge in Australia; after a difficult life as refugees in England, she and her mother reunited with her father in Rome in 1945 where he worked with the United Nations Refugee Association (UNRA); and Eva continued her schooling; in 1948 her parents joined her mother's extended family in Sydney; Eva first lived and attended school at Bondi; her parents separated about two years later; after initially failing the Leaving Certificate at Sydney Girls High in 1954 she eventually qualified and attended Sydney University from 1956-57; lived in England and Italy from 1958-1961; when she returned to Australia, she married John Cox in 1962 and had a daughter, Rebecca, in 1964.

Cox speaks of working in market research following her divorce in 1968; then studied sociology at the University of NSW, graduating with honours in 1974; in the early 1970s she joined the Labor Party and became involved in the formation of the Women's Electoral Lobby; after tutoring at the UNSW she became Director of the NSW Council for Social Service from 1977-81; then advisor to Don Grimes, the Shadow Spokesperson on Social Security from 1981-82; between 1989 and 1994 she ran Distaff Associates in association with Helen Leonard; since 1994 she has lectured at the University of Technology, Sydney; in 1995 she was awarded the Order of Australia and delivered the ABC's annual Boyer lectures entitled 'A Truly Civil Society'; her book, Leading Women, was published in 1996.

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