Yesterday, March 8th was International Women’s Day (IWD), originally called International Working Women’s Day, which is celebrated every year on the same date. In different regions the focus of the celebrations ranges from general celebration of respect, appreciation, and love towards women for their economic, political, and social achievements. This year’s theme is “Pledge for Parity”- marking a call to action for accelerating gender parity.
According to world-renowned feminist, journalist and social and political activist Gloria Steinem, “The story of women’s struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organization but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights,”. International Women’s Day is all about celebration, reflection, advocacy, and action. International Women’s Day (IWD) has been observed since in the early 1900’s – a time of great expansion and turbulence in the industrialized world, which saw many changes in societies, across the world.
On the occasion of International Women’s Day, it is also imperative to understand how the universal symbol for female came to be. The two standard gender symbols denoting male ♂ and female ♀ are derived from astrological symbols, denoting the planets Mars and Venus, respectively. These symbols have been in use since the Renaissance also denoting elements in alchemy, specifically the metals iron and copper.
While it is heartening to see that the concept of International Women’s Day is gaining more prominence across the world year by year, it is also vital to remember that gender disparity across various fields, ages and societies continues to be a harsh reality. Celebrating women on this day is important, but it is equally important to fight for equal rights and gender sensitivity all year round. This is what we at CSR continuously strive towards!
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