Defining Moments in Global Women’s Rights: The Story of International Women’s Day

Defining Moments in Global Women’s Rights: The Story of International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day (IWD), observed annually on March 8th, is more than just a date on the calendar. It is a vital platform for raising awareness about gender equality, celebrating women’s achievements, and advocating for women’s rights and gender justice.

This day unites people from Tokyo to Rome, Buenos Aires to Paris, and beyond, in a worldwide movement for gender equality.

Power of Protests: A Global Perspective

Throughout history, women’s protests have played a crucial role in advocating for fundamental rights. Fueled by the rising wave of ultraconservatism in some countries and the haunting memory of female victims of war, International Women’s Day serves as a reminder of the continual struggle for women’s rights.

Italy: A Wake-up Call

The feminist consciousness in Italy, which had been dormant for decades, was jolted awake by the tragic story of Giulia Cecchettin. This young woman’s murder at the hands of her ex-partner sparked nationwide outrage and sparked massive protests.

France: A Celebration Amidst Tension

In France, International Women’s Day was marked by festive celebrations, with over 10,000 people, predominantly women, marching in Paris. However, the day was not without conflict, as tensions arose between pro-Israeli and pro-Palestinian protestors.

United Kingdom: Celebrating Women All Month Long

The UK adopted a unique approach to International Women’s Day, extending the celebrations throughout the month of March. London’s iconic Eye was illuminated in purple, and a host of exhibitions, festivals, and cultural events celebrated women in diverse areas, from the arts to politics.

Story of Women’s Day in the East

China: A Unique Spin on Women’s Day

In China, International Women’s Day takes on a different flavor. With no women among the ruling Politburo’s top figures, the day is often marked by beauty treatments and shopping discounts. The online retail giants Alibaba and JD even rebranded the day as “Goddess Day”.

Japan, South Korea, and Thailand: Marching for Change

In contrast to China, women in Japan, South Korea, and Thailand have taken to the streets in protest. In Thailand, women carried large baby bottles as placards, demanding up to 180 days of paid maternity leave.

International Women’s Day in the Americas

United States: A Low-key Affair

In the US, International Women’s Day is not widely organized or celebrated, apart from small, symbolic gatherings. Instead, the day often passes unnoticed, with some media outlets encouraging readers to support women-owned businesses or read books by female authors.

Latin America: A Strong Call to Action

South of the US border, protests against gender violence are gaining momentum. In Argentina, women are fighting against an unprecedented rollback of their rights since the country’s return to democracy in 1983.

Wrapping Up

International Women’s Day serves as a significant reminder of the ongoing struggle for gender equality. It is a day to celebrate the progress made while acknowledging the challenges that still lie ahead.

Despite the varying ways in which this day is commemorated worldwide, the unified goal remains the same: achieving gender equality for all.