Over 100 years have passed and still the passion for female empowerment is going strong in today’s society. Every March, women all over the world come together to celebrate Women’s History March.
This event was originally organised to counter the overwhelming male dominance in historical recognition of achievements. Given that many societies are still very patriarchal, it was a must to showcase even for a single month the rich contributions of women in history that are usually hidden from the spotlight.
Women needed to break free from the traditional stereotypes of a housewife, a child bearer and a homemaker. Women’s History Month is dedicated to honouring women and recognising their successful accomplishments in a male-dominated world.
The cause for the Women’s History Month started during the early 1900s in America. In 1908, over ten thousand women, campaigning against oppression and inequality, marched throughout the city of New York.
Included in their demands were shorter work hours, better pay and voting rights. The first Women’s Day took place on 28 February 1909, in New York City, honouring the earlier event.
In the course of the following two years, the Women’s Day spread to international appraisal riding on the back of socialism.
Feminist activists slowly revised school curriculums and history books to correct the deliberate omission of historical contributions of women in their respective countries.
After almost 80 years, the Women’s History Month was established by the US Congress through a proclamation in 1987 under the administration of President Ronald Reagan.
On the other hand, Australia celebrated Women’s History Month for the first time in 2000. Helen Leonard, convenor of the National Women’s Media Centre, lobbied for this event to take place in Australia.
Since the start of its celebration, Women’s History Month aims to achieve the following goals:
- Provide information and educate people on numerous contributions of women to Australia
- Promote and encourage various initiatives dedicated to women; and
- Encourage different organisations and governmental institutions to support and activities devoted to women
Whatever their race, skin colour, social status, or political affiliation, women in Australia are free and highly encouraged to gather together to celebrate the Women’s History Month.
Whether you are an Australian, an Aboriginal, Filipino-Australian, or any other foreign female, Women’s History Month is for you.
This is a celebration inviting women of all ages and all walks of life to laud their womanhood and as the theme for this years’ WHM goes, “be bold for change”.
You contribute a part of Australia’s rich history and world history with your own achievements. Take pride in it and share it with other women.
Happy Women’s History Month!