This writing is dedicated to honoring the 8th of March, Women’s Day.
“History repeats itself,” they say. Yesterdays can become tomorrows.
Multiple examples can be given to justify this statement. One of them is women’s rights movements…
The dramatic changes for women in family life, religion, government, work, and education did not happen by chance. Dozens of heroines democratically fought for the war of becoming one and equal by holding meetings, submitting petitions, and delivering public speakings. Today, those nonviolent resistance acts are named the women’s rights movement, which is the series of struggles that have happened to achieve equality among men and women.
The Witch Trials - An Excuse to Elude From Wise Women?
In the 17th century, witchcraft was a common practice. The religious community of Putra, based in Massachusetts, couldn’t permit it and hunted 14 female witches. In their eyes, women were an object that should raise kids, stay at home and serve husbands. Nonetheless, it wasn’t those morals that killed women, it was the fear underneath. Too powerful, too wise, too female… In other words, women's access to obtain natural powers scared men. Therefore, women were slaughtered under the pretext of doing “Devil’s work.”
Later in the 17th century, women faced one of the most remarkable inequalities: inheritance problems. Husbands controlled most of their wives' personal property, including children, until the Married Women's Property Act 1870 and Married Women's Property Act 1882.
Is 18 a lucky number?
Maybe. In the late 18th century, women’s rights became a debatable topic in France. Since it was “debatable”, not everybody agreed. The famous French philosopher Jean Jacques Rousseau has a saying that implies “it was the order of nature for a woman to obey men”. Still, the 18th century stood a chance. Mary Wollstonecraft, the writer of “Thoughts on the Education of Daughters”, became one of the first women who spoke out against gender inequality, pushed for equal educational opportunities, and demanded an equal justice system. Wollstonecraft’s independent thoughts and books are her greatest legacy.
Tea Bags Were A Thing?
"A woman is like a tea bag; you never know how strong it is until it's in hot water." said once Elanor Roosevelt. She looks unlikely to be a feminist in many ways: married to a man with traditional beliefs, has 5 kids, and is politically in the foreground. However, in the 1920s and 1930s she take part in a group of women who fought for labor laws, international peace, women's participation in the Democratic Party, civil rights, wage equality, education for women — and the rest, as they say, is history. Moreover, she was the chair of the Presidential Commission on the Status of Women and interviewed many politicians including President John F. Kennedy.
Today, the spirits of Mary Wollstonecraft and Elanor Roosevelt passed on to two women’s rights defenders.
He For She
HeForShe is an initiative that has united individuals to campaign for gender equality in their communities, companies, and colleges. In 2015, the HeForShe Champions pledged to bring their knowledge and influence to bear on achieving gender equality, as well as to commit the organizations they head to achieving meaningful, long-term change. One of the calls was made by Emma Watson.
Emma Watson, now the UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, used her well-known reputation for acting to the benefit of projects around the world. She made speeches though she was criticized.
First Lady of Women’s Rights
Michelle Obama, First Lady of the United Nations of America, tried to radically balance gender inequality. She was the first African-American woman to serve in this position. She used her platform to establish herself as a powerful role model for women. In May 2014, Obama joined a campaign to reunite schoolgirls kidnapped in Nigeria. Furthermore, she unveiled new projects including the Girls Opportunity Alliance and Let Girls Learn.
Back to International Women’s Day
International Women's Day, IWD, is a global celebration commemorating women's cultural, political, and social achievements. It also highlights the key points in the women's rights movement, raising awareness about problems like gender equality, and violence against women.
The dates have changed, but our problems are still the same. Emma Waston and Michelle Obama are still pursuing equality for women just like Mary Wollstonecraft and Eleanor Roosevelt did. When will this problem solve, if not today? History should not repeat itself on this issue anymore. At the end of the day, who runs the world? Girls!
We are happy to celebrate the Women’s Day of every incredible woman all over the world.
“So much could be corrected in the world if girls were educated and had power over their lives.” - Michelle Obama