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Women History Month

 Celebrate Women's History Month and honor the resilience, achievements, and empowerment of women throughout history. Learn about the origins of this commemorative month, its significance, and the ongoing legacy of women's contributions. Explore how education, advocacy, and diversity intersect in driving progress towards gender equality. Join the conversation and empower women of all backgrounds.

Celebrating Women's History Month: Honoring Herstory, Progress, and Empowerment

A vibrant thread on the timeline of commemorative months, Women’s History Month each year resuscitates stories of courage and resilience, achievement and empowerment across time. Women’s History Month is a time to consider women’s contributions to changing the world – both for better and (sometimes) for worse, from catalysing social movements to trailblazing and transcending social conventions in all fields. Drawing from herstory, we peel back the layers of history and expose narratives of courage, innovation and achievement shaping the world. In this article, we discuss the value of Women’s History Month, its development and the lasting legacy of women’s contributions.

Herstory Unveiled:

The history of Women’s History Month began at the beginning of the 20th century, during the height of the suffrage movement in the US. Like the fight for the right to vote, this month emerged from the fact that women’s histories needed to be constantly emphasised. And so it came to pass that a week in March came to be seen as something that might warrant a special emphasis during a time of the year that features holidays dedicated to, among others, a St Patrick, languages, and mothers. The week-long celebration initiated by a commemorative presidential resolution declared in 1980 by Jimmy Carter coincided with 8 March, otherwise known as International Women’s Day. The month-long version of the celebration commenced in 1987, with the ceaseless work of pioneers such as the National Women’s History Project.

Every March is a reminder of the women who fought against the social norms of their times to lay down the foundation for an equal future. The valiant suffragettes Susan B Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, civil rights campaigners Rosa Parks and Malala Yousafzai are the torch-bearers that unlock the indomitable spirit of women across generations. Women’s History Month pays tribute to their courage and resolution.

Empowering Through Education:

Education underpins Women’s History Month, offering an educational foundation for social change and empowerment. It gives women an opportunity to speak up, to have a voice, to be heard – and to right wrongs. It helps people uncover the social, political and cultural contributions made by women around the globe. During Women’s History Month, educational events take place in schools, colleges and communities all around the world. Public talks, panel discussions, film screenings and art exhibits are just a few of the educational events that mark the month.

When taking steps to integrate women’s history into the school and university curriculum, educational institutions are creating a space that encourages students to think critically about gender stereotypes and appreciate a diversity of perspectives. From the perspective of Women’s History, students will gain a broader and deeper understanding of how women from various backgrounds have fought against discriminations and overcame obstacles to achieve their dreams and ambitions, and ultimately strive for the development of society.

Driving Progress and Equality:

Women’s History Month also helps move forward efforts for gender justice and social change. It provides opportunities to confront issues such as male violence against women, economic justice for women, and reproductive rights. Advocacy campaigns, policy changes and grassroots activism are mobilised to shatter systems of gender oppression.

The moment called Women’s History Month gives a jolt not only from 1 March to 31 March, but well beyond the month. Corporate board rooms, statehouses and even the halls around the White House grow with women engaged in advancing women’s rights or erasing gender inequities in their professions. Many more women than ever before are running for office in the US, all levels, at the same time. The world of work remains far from achieving gender equity, and much more collaborative work for and with women not only in our boardrooms but also in corridors of power is essential to close the wage gap, ensure women’s material equity, and, ultimately, to undergird an empathetic and compassionate polity. Women need one another – now, more than ever.

Celebrating Diversity and Intersectionality:

Women’s History Month is a celebration of herstory. The use of the plural in herstory reflects the diversity and intersectionality of women’s experiences. It recognises that women’s oppression and the fight for social change are also shaped by race, ethnicity, class, sexuality, ability and other aspects of identity. In an effort to amplify the voices of women who have traditionally been invisible in our collective past, such as women of colour, lesbian or bisexual women, trans women, and women with different kinds of disabilities, the use of the plural form empowers women to tell their own stories.

This year Intersectional feminism has been helpful for Women’s History Month, to show how oppression is interconnected, and how we need solidarity among diverse communities. Because we cannot defeat sexism unless discrimination are challenged on all other fronts, too: for black women, Native American women, Latinas, Asian American and Pacific Islander women, and for all other women. From Truthout 13 March 2023.

In recognising Women’s History Month, we should celebrate all the women whose stories have shaped history and continue to mark our present. We do so in the name of their resilience, their persistence and their sense of community, which helps them navigate the choppy waters of inequality and discrimination leading toward more just, equitable and inclusive shores.