“Spark and Cultivate”

LISTEN and Grassroots Feminist Activism in the Melbourne Music Scene


  • Catherine Strong RMIT University
  • Evelyn Morris




feminism, activism, gender, popular music, Melbourne


LISTEN is a Melbourne-based feminist collective focused on improving the position of women in the music industry, in part achieved through improving the documentation of women’s contribution to music. This article includes an interview with founder Evelyn Morris and gives an overview of the development and achievements of LISTEN, whilst placing it in the context of feminist activism in Australia. Morris discusses how LISTEN gave form to the dissatisfaction that was being felt by many women in the Melbourne music scene, and quickly became a hub for a variety of feminist activity. She also elaborates on her own perspectives on what feminism entails, and the recent increase in activism in this area.

Author Biography

  • Catherine Strong, RMIT University

    Catherine Strong is a lecturer in the Music Industry programme at RMIT in Melbourne, Australia. Among her publications are Grunge: Popular Music and Memory (Ashgate, 2011) and Death and the Rock Star (edited with Barbara Lebrun, Ashgate, 2015). Her research deals with various aspects of memory, nostalgia and gender in rock music, popular culture and the media. She is currently Chair of IASPM-ANZ and reviews editor for Perfect Beat.


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Gender, Popular Music and Australian Identity

How to Cite

Strong, C., & Morris, E. (2016). “Spark and Cultivate”: LISTEN and Grassroots Feminist Activism in the Melbourne Music Scene. Journal of World Popular Music, 3(1), 108-124. https://doi.org/10.1558/jwpm.v3i1.31135