Happy International Women's Day!
March 8 is the official day, “International Women’s Day”. This day commemorates the history of women as an equal member of society since around the time of the Suffrage movement in the early 1900s and late 1800s.
(Its historical roots and the ways they have changed throughout the 20th century will not be discussed here, but considered not to be overlooked.)
There are so many reasons for the significance of International Women’s Day—a day where we can know, amongst many other things, the times in which the debasement and exploitation of the women would no longer be sanctioned, tolerated, or acceptable.
Though it took another 50-100 years of struggle in various contexts throughout history, we can see how far women have come today — from having to fight for their dignity as humans with decent labor practices, to demonstrating how women are just as successful, articulate, and capable of leadership, discoveries, creativity and innovation.
One of the reasons International Women’s Day is very (extremely) important is that it allows us to pause and recognize basic human principles of equality and freedom.
This also leads to further probing of the social, economic, cultural and political fabric in which women and other minors had been oppressed. And just as significant is to discover and enact solutions to why and how certain injustices were (and still are) condoned.
The second reason that International Women’s Day is extremely important is that it provides great hope, healing, and strength to the various women around the world whose agency and voice — as a unique human individual —was muted, violated, or seized.
Practices that include some form of subjugation of women against their will perpetuate the notion that women cannot or ought not exercise their basic human rights as a free agent.
And should this notion have become part of a person’s consciousness or become a cycle in sisters and daughters, the global exposure and celebration of International Women’s Day is an indelible and impactful “day” of great hope to instill in people.
A third reason International Women’s Day is extremely important is that it opens the discussion on what International Women’s Day is not about.
Due to misunderstandings and misinterpretations arising from the contentious nature surrounding such history of women, it’s also an opportunity to learn how everything under the umbrella of Women’s Studies including International Women’s Day can be misconstrued.
During a changing history, there are narratives of real people who underwent dire challenges and overcame; and celebrating this day is to recognize women’s achievements and impactful roles in economy, science & medicine, education, family, law, etc.
Any discourse in efforts to demonize or disparage men, as a kind of "battle of the sexes" isn't what Women's Studies or International Women's Day champion.
Thus, behind the title of "International Women’s Day" is not just a remembrance of the previously mentioned accomplishments, but is also to investigate the historical kaleidoscope of identity formations and self-consciousness that change throughout time and place.