Insights into Gender, 'Rurality' and the Legal Practice Experience
AbstractThere has been a sustained focus over the past two decades on the status and position of women lawyers in the Australian legal profession. However, limited attention has been given to the particular experiences and retention of women lawyers in rural, regional and remote (RRR) legal practice. Feminist scholarship has highlighted the gendered way in which rural social space shapes understanding of identity and experience, suggesting the need to explore the ways in which the ‘othering’ of women in ‘rural’ space might bear on their legal practice experience. This article seeks to explore the intersection of gender and rurality in the context of RRR practice and the relevance of this intersection to the legal practice experience. It highlights some particular issues for women in RRR practice, considers ways in which gender is constructed in rural space and, through the case study examples of two female rural/regional lawyers, offers some experiential insights into the intersections of law, gender and ‘rurality’.