Women and girls have long been pressured to conform to written and unwritten rules about how to think, act, look and feel. But a new generation of writers and activists are breaking down barriers to allow women and girls to show their real selves. Hear from Heartbreak High actress, advocate and Different, Not Less author Chloé Hayden, Wadjanbarra Yidinji, Jirrbal and African-American filmmaker and Gigorou author Sasha Kutabah Sarago, and activist for sexual assault survivors and The Ninth Life of a Diamond Miner author Grace Tame in conversation with disability and women’s rights advocate Hannah Diviney about their pathbreaking work.

A Sydney Writers’ Festival Live & Local Livestream event.


Chloé Hayden is an Australian AACTA winning actor, global motivational speaker, bestselling author, award-winning disability rights activist and a Marie Claire Woman of The Year. Pushing half a billion views on her own social media as well as a global outreach, the heart of which these all intersect are her passion for creating change, celebrating diversity, and pushing towards a better future. Best known for her AACTA–winning performance as Quinni in Netflix’s Heartbreak High, where she made history as Australia’s first mainstream autistic actress, and one of the first autistic characters in history to actually be played by an autistic actress, as well as her bestselling memoir and self-help book, Chloé is changing the way we view disability, showcasing the world that we are Different, Not Less.


Sasha Kutabah Sarago is a Wadjanbarra Yidinji, Jirrbal and African-American writer, filmmaker and speaker. Her debut memoir Gigorou: It’s time to reclaim beauty. First Nations wisdom and womanhood. was published by Pantera Press (2023). Sasha’s TEDx talk ‘The (De)colonising of Beauty’ was selected as TED.com 2021 Editor’s Choice. Sasha has also written and directed documentaries Too Pretty to Be Aboriginal and InsideOUT, with articles published in The Guardian, SBS Voices, Fashion Journal and Frankie magazines.


Grace Tame is a leader of positive change. She is a survivor-advocate for victims of sexual assault, particularly those who were abused as children.
On 25 of January, 2021, Grace was named Australian of the Year. Grace has since started The Grace Tame Foundation, which is a not-for-profit philanthropic organisation that campaigns for and helps fund initiatives that work to prevent and respond to sexual abuse of children and others.


Hannah Diviney is a writer, advocate and actress (you can see her in Latecomers available on SBS on Demand) as well as the Editor in Chief of global media company Missing Perspectives. Her debut essay collection I’ll Let Myself In will be out this September, published by Allen & Unwin.

Event and Ticket Details

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This event is free but bookings are encouraged as capacity is limited.

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