Happy International Women’s Day!!

Spain
Spain, 2012

Tomorrow is International Women’s Day, an unofficial holiday in American but one which has been observed by many countries since 1977 when “the United Nations General Assembly invited its member states to proclaim March 8 as the UN Day for women’s rights and world peace” (from wikipedia).  However, it is actually an appropriation of a day that had been observed in the Soviet Union and a number of other European countries since 1910.   The history of International Women’s Day is not widely acknowledged in America (or in most of the capitalist world we live in, I assume) and most are content to hear “International Women’s Day” and write it off as just another Hallmark holiday like Valentine’s or Secretary’s day (sorry whoever might be a personal assistant out there). The reality is that the earliest of these celebrations were a result of women gathering together to articulate the demands that they had of the the leaders of their societies, equalities they wanted corrected, and complaints that they wanted heard.  Clara Zetkin, who proposed the idea of an International Women’s Day in 1910 thought the day should be one of celebration wherein women could press for their demands.  May it be so that many of us men too will reinvigorate Zetkin’s spirit and keep the voices of women heard.  Everything is political, folks, so please consider doing more than buy your grandmother some flowers for International Women’s Day tomorrow… Maybe the posters below will be an encouragement to sit down with one another and talk to the women we are close to, to hear their complaints and demands.  We might even learn about how women are still being held back, oppressed, and abused in very real ways, in ways that might be happening right in front of us.  In our crazy world let us fight for some real changes that will make the world a truly more equal place with more respect and dignity offered to everyone. Until these changes happen take a look at some posters from past International Women’s Days and consider what it would be like if we all gathered together tomorrow and did something big to commemorate this years celebration…maybe we could demand that the US make it a national holiday – I sure think it should be.

Palestine
Palestine, 2012
USSR
USSR
England, 1977
England, 1977
Germany
Germany, 1914

 

3 thoughts on “Happy International Women’s Day!!

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