Else, Anne

Else, Anne

In Brief

Anne Else is a writer and freelance editor. Her writing is concerned primarily with feminist social commentary, analysis, and the history of how writing by New Zealand women has been received. Else’s articles, reviews and commentary have appeared in magazines and journals locally and overseas. She was a co-founder of New Zealand’s feminist magazine, Broadsheet, which ran from 1972-1992, and she was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to literature in 2004. Her memoir, The Colour of Food, was published by Awa Press as an e-book in 2013 and in print the following year.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Else, Anne (1945- ) is a writer and freelance editor. Else describes her own work as concerned primarily with feminist social commentary, analysis and history, including the history of how writing by New Zealand women has been received. As a writer, Else’s first book was A Question of Adoption: Closed Stranger Adoption in New Zealand 1944-74 (1991). Jeanine Graham, writing in the New Zealand Journal of History, said that ‘Else has written a cogent and compelling study of the ideology and practice of closed stranger adoption in New Zealand' … the book ‘must surely become essential reading for all whose professional interests in any way impinge upon the area of adoption; but it is also a book for all New Zealanders with a social conscience.’

In response to the advent of New Right political and social policies in New Zealand, Else wrote False Economy: New Zealanders face the Conflict between Paid and Unpaid Work (1996). Pamela Stirling in the New Zealand Listener notes that Else’s book is ‘important’ because in it she ‘documents how female jobs have become increasingly subject to casualisation, poor pay, insecurity and invisibility.’

A Super Future? The Price of Growing Older in New Zealand
(1998) was written by Else with Susan St John. Books compiled by Else as editor include: A Woman’s Life: Writing by Women About Female Experience in New Zealand (1989), with Heather Roberts; Women Together: A History of Women’s Organisations in New Zealand (1993); and Protecting our Future: The Case for Greater Regulation of Assisted Reproductive Technology (1999), written and edited with Sandra Coney.

Else has contributed chapters to a number of books, including Feminist Voices: Women’s Studies Texts for Aotearoa/New Zealand (1992); Women in History Vol 2 (1993); Heading Nowhere in a Navy Blue Suit (1993); A Book in the Hand (2000); and Going Public: The Changing Face of New Zealand History (2001). Over the last forty years, her articles, reviews and commentary have appeared in New Zealand magazines and journals, including Broadsheet, New Zealand Listener, Landfall, Women’s Studies Journal, as well as in scholarly journals overseas.

Anne Else was born and raised in Auckland. She completed an MA (Hons) in English at the University of Auckland. A co-founder of New Zealand’s feminist magazine Broadsheet (which ran from 1972-1992), she worked as a junior lecturer in English at both the University of Auckland and Auckland Teachers’ College, before moving overseas with her first husband, Chris Else, until 1977.

In 1988-89 Else was the Claude McCarthy Fellow, Stout Research Centre, Victoria University of Wellington, where she wrote A Question of Adoption. In 2004 she was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to literature. In 2006 she was awarded a PhD by Victoria University of Wellington for her thesis ‘On shifting ground: Self-narrative, feminist theory and writing practice’, which takes the form of an intellectual autobiography looking back over her writing life.

A section of her memoir won the 2009 Pamela Tomlinson prize for creative writing. The full memoir, The Colour of Food, was published in 2013, as the first original e-book published by Awa Press. The Colour of Food was published in print the following year.

Anne Else was married to writer Harvey McQueen, who died in 2010 after a long illness.

MEDIA LINKS AND CLIPS

Updated January 2017.