Today, March 8 is International Women’s Day – short history

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International Women’s Day is aimed at combating the multiple forms of discrimination and exploitation of women and girls around the world.

International Women’s Day tradition has its roots in the workers’ movement in the struggle for better working conditions.

At the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, women were exploited twice: on the one hand, in factory work under inhuman conditions, and on the other, for unreasonable living conditions in disastrous housing conditions.

Among the central themes for engaged women were better working conditions, equal pay for equal work, reduced working hours without reduced wages, minimum wage fixing, maternity protection, and abortion.

In 1909, the first National Women’s Day was celebrated in the United States.

In 1910, the Second International Socialist Conference of Women in Copenhagen established an annual International Women’s Day to mobilize women’s interests against exploitation and oppression. Central concerns were women’s equality and the right to vote.

On March 19, 1911, for the first time in Europe, on Women’s Day, women and men took to the streets to raise awareness of their demands: the right to work, access to public office, vocational training, and an end to discrimination in the workplace. One of the main objectives was the introduction of the right to vote.

1921, the first International Women’s Day was celebrated on March 8. The date commemorates the textile workers’ uprising in New York in 1857, where 129 women workers were killed, and the textile workers’ strike in St. Petersburg in 1917.

Under Nazi ideology, Women’s Day was banned, and Mother’s Day was introduced instead to highlight the role of women as wives and mothers.

It was not until the 1960s that the women’s movement revived International Women’s Day. March 8th has become a day of solidarity among women of all walks of life and political backgrounds to raise awareness of women’s concerns.
International Women’s Day is celebrated worldwide on March 8 since a similar decision of the United Nations General Assembly (UN) in December 1977.

  • hp/picture: canva.com
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