“Woman is not born: she is made.”
says Andrea Dworkin, the most brave radical feminist of her era. International Women’s day is celebrated world-wide with the intention of glorifying the achievements of women irrespective of national, cultural, linguistic, political, and economic differences. The day is exclusively meant for respecting the women around you and their contribution to the family and society. Apart from it being a general observance of a social event just like International Men’s Day, IWD is associated with the systematic historical oppression faced by women and measures to be taken to free herself.
A day exclusively for women – the thought emerged almost a century ago when about 15000 women employees protested for more pay and less working time in 1908 at New York. February 28 was the day US celebrated National Women’s day in 1909 as a remembrance of the strike. From then, each country observed it in different dates and in 1913, it was decided to celebrate the day on March 8.
From 1996 IWD is following a theme for each year in order to propagate and channelize the year round activity for Women. The campaign theme for 2017 is “Be Bold For Change”. The campaign summons everyone to be bold for a change that makes the world more gender-inclusive. So this is the right time to think on the disparities imposed on women directly and indirectly.
What is the situation?
An urban girl/boy of this century is very well aware that the world has seen some significant changes of the status that women hold in society and family. A girl child is given education these days, a higher education is possible and gaining knowledge is within her reach. She is respected and given opportunity to shine in her own interests and respected by her male co-workers. It is long since she stepped out of kitchen and stepped into moon, we find the contribution of women in almost all fields possible. Indian men are already satisfied that their wives and daughters are already out of veils, they need not die with their husbands, they can remarry and they have been provided with equal opportunity to learn, work and play.
There are also claims that feminism is becoming a misled craze of enabling young women and girls to step out of culture. The claim for equality and freedom is executed in exaggerated fashion which blames men for all its action.
So is this the whole picture? We have women in all fields, we have legislation that support the right of women in each family and in society, we have many role models and we find women emerging as champions. So, is the battle for freedom for equal rights won?
Keep pondering and watching the space for a final outlook.