Today is International Women’s Day. This was a celebration that I have to say would have completely passed me by had I not spent a few years living in Italy where it is a holiday which is both noted and actively celebrated (in inimitable Italian style – by giving mimosa flowers to women who are important in your life/come into your shop or restaurant/fill up with petrol at your petrol station/pass you in the street).
Still, I have found some events that are marking the celebration of the day.
The International Women’s Day site goes global and lists events happening in many different countries throughout the world including the UK , the US , Australia and many others – although interestingly, nothing in Italy.
Back to the UK and the Equalities Office have taken the theme of the general economic downturn to list what they are doing for women – and more globally the Independent runs with a theme and slideshow of inspiring women of Africa courtesy of VSO (Voluntary Services Overseas) which has a ‘Helping Women Help the World’ theme.
My own thoughts, I have hoped for many years that feminism ceases to be something that women feel they need to explain or feel apologetic about.
Somehow some of the connotations have become warped into a perception that feminists either hate men or want to be men. That is not what feminism is about. No-one should be embarrassed or feel they need to justify promoting a feminist agenda or feel they need to explain away feminism through terms of denigrating others who feel differently
‘I’m not a feminist but.. ‘ or ‘I’m not one of those feminists’ or ‘I am a feminist but I don’t hate men’. No, you don’t need to explain. Feminism needs to retake some of the ground lost through people who have tried to push its agenda to the margins.
Anyway, there is lots out there about it and to celebrate it or mark it!
And for the record, there is an International Men’s Day too…