About Sheila

Sheila Jeffreys writes in the areas of sexual politics, international gender politics, and lesbian & gay politics. She has written ten books on the history and politics of sexuality. Originally from the UK, Sheila moved to Melbourne in 1991 to take up a position at the University of Melbourne. She retired back to the UK in 2015. She has been actively involved in feminist and lesbian feminist politics, particularly around the issue of sexual violence, since 1973.

A picture of Sheila Jeffreys sitting on a wooden bench amongst greenery
A picture of Trigger Warning: My Lesbian Feminist Life, a book by Sheila Jeffreys, 2020

Trigger Warning: My Lesbian Feminist Life - Sheila Jeffreys, 2020

“I am in the very fortunate position of having been able to contribute to two waves of feminism: The Women’s Liberation Movement and the new wave that is taking place now.” Trigger Warning: My Lesbian Feminist Life is both an engaging autobiography and a fascinating account of feminist history. From the heady days of the Women’s Liberation Movement through to the backlash against radical feminism as neoliberal laissez-faire attitudes took hold. Read more…

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The Eroticism of (In)Equality

In this paper, presented at the ‘One is not born a woman’ conference, celebrating 50th anniversary of Simone de Beauvoir’s Second Sex organised by Fruaenmediaturm at Cologne, 22-24 October, 1999, Sheila Jeffreys argues that a massive obstacle to women’s equality lies in the way in which sex under male supremacy is constructed out of the […]

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FTM Transsexualism and Grief

In “Pornography and Grief” Andrea Dworkin writes very powerfully about the impact upon her of having to look at so much pornography in order to write about it. The horror of the pain, destruction, and just pure run of the mill hatred towards women inspired grief in her (Dworkin, Letters from a War Zone, 1988). […]

Can human rights as a concept survive? NGOCSW66 – 20 March 2022

I am going to argue today that the inclusion of imagined identities such as ‘gender identity’ into human rights understandings and activism threatens the significance and integrity of the very idea of human rights. The Declaration on Women’s Sex-Based Rights that we are here to talk about today concerns the protection of women’s rights from […]