[Summary of the book containing this chapter:] Speaking Out is the first wideranging collection to focus on the female voice in public contexts. Despite an ever-growing role in public life, many women even in the Western developed world still struggle to gain access to the public arena, and once there, to gain recognition and respect for their effectiveness as speakers. The contributors to this volume show how female speech is often received and evaluated quite differently from the speech of men, whether within government and politics, law, the church, education, the business world, or the media. The book is written with passion by a stellar group of scholars in language and gender from around the English-speaking world, offering students a broad theoretical and contextual canvas. They consider both the barriers and the opportunities encountered by women seeking to gain recognition in the public sphere on the basis of 'the way they speak'.