To celebrate International Women’s Day 2012 we link to and quote from just some of the articles celebrating IWD we have found so far.
To all women resisting imperialism, war, violence, patriarchy, environmental destruction and other forms of oppression all year round we say the struggle continues! Venceremos!
Sisterly Solidarity, today and everyday,
Sisters of Resistance
International Women’s Day: How did it start??
Today marks the 101stInternational Women’s Day around the globe. Communities use the day across the world to press demands on governments, promote gender equality, raise awareness about women’s oppression, celebrate mothers, and more. Given that this day has so much significance worldwide, it is worth knowing how the movement was started. Consider it another item in your feminist history repertoire. [...]
International Women’s Day was originally created by a group of international Suffragists to recognize their work and to press demands on their respective governments. The holiday was proposed at the second International Conference of Working Women, a Socialist conference held in Denmark, at which over 100 women from 17 countries attended.
At first the day was most widely observed in Europe but quickly spread globally. It is now an official national holiday in many countries including China, Russia, Bulgaria and Uzbekistan. While the overall purpose is the same, each country has a unique history with the holiday…
Read the full article here
Africa Celebrates International Women’s Day
Rural women represent, on average, more than 40 percent of the agricultural workforce in the developing world, but they own only 1 percent of the land, and face constant barriers to equality and success.
Why the Question of Palestine is a Feminist Concern
I have been asked how I view the occupation of Palestine from my feminist perspective, or perhaps another way to put it, why and how I think the question of Palestine is a feminist concern. It seems to me that the question posed by the predicament of Palestinians is not merely the uncertainty of their future political fate as a people (a nation without a state, territory, and resources of its own, without capacities of self-determination). It is rather the question of the specific conditions of human devaluation and disposability to which they appear to be fated by a normalized system of exploitative inequality, dispossession and violence.
That these conditions of devaluation and disposability depend on the maintenance of naturalized hierarchies of human difference (race, ethnicity, nationality, religion) will undoubtedly resonate with feminist analyses of forms of gendered devaluation, disposability and violence that obtain in many socio-historical contexts, including this one. It is also the case, however, that beyond any homologies, which this theoretical resonance might suggest (eg. between racialized and gendered forms of devaluation and disposability), the projects of settler colonialism and apartheid nationalism that the Israeli state embodies and the logic of security which undergirds and legitimates its policies of surveillance, militarization and war have long been feminist concerns.
Feminist analyses have shown how such projects are enabled and upheld not only by normative cultural ideals of gender and sexuality embedded in their constitutive conceptions of land, territory, sovereignty, people/race, citizenship, freedom and power. As modes of producing and regulating life – indeed, as projects that see to the uneven distribution of life-chances (the augmentation of life-chances of some at the cost of the reduction of life-chances of others), like and in tandem with capitalism – the projects of settler colonialism and apartheid nationalism also require divisions of labor and forms of social reproduction (and social death) that are profoundly gendered and racialized in ways that exceed the dominant form of political antagonism.
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Laurie Penny: That’s enough politeness – women need to rise up in anger
A huge cultural change is taking place all over the world right now. Over the past year, from the Arab Spring uprisings to the global anti-corporate occupations, young people and workers have realised that they were flogged a false dream of prosperity in return for quiet obedience, exhausting, precarious jobs and perpetual debt – most of it shouldered by women, whose low-status, low-paid and unpaid work has driven the expansion of exploitative markets across the world. Equality, like prosperity, was supposed to trickle down, but not a lot can trickle down through a glass ceiling.
Women, like everyone else, have been duped. We have been persuaded over the past 50 years to settle for a bland, neoliberal vision of what liberation should mean. Life may have become a little easier in that time for white women who can afford to hire a nanny, but the rest of us have settled for a cheap, knock-off version of gender revolution. Instead of equality at work and in the home, we settled for “choice”, “flexibility” and an exciting array of badly paid part-time work to fit around childcare and chores. Instead of sexual liberation and reproductive freedom, we settled for mitigated rights to abortion and contraception that are constantly under attack, and a deeply misogynist culture that shames us if we’re not sexually attractive, dismisses us if we are, and blames us if we are raped or assaulted, as one in five of us will be in our lifetime.
Read full article here
Women and Mental Health A- Z
Mental health problems affect women and men equally, but some are more common among women. Abuse is often a factor in women’s mental health problems. Treatments need to be sensitive to and reflect gender differences.
The same numbers of women and men experience mental health problems overall, but some problems are more common in women than men, and vice versa.
Various social factors put women at greater risk of poor mental health than men. However, women’s readiness to talk about their feelings and their strong social networks can help protect their mental health.
Women as guardians of family health
However busy they are, it is important that women look after their mental health. Traditionally, women have tended to take on the responsibility of looking after the health of members of their family as well as themselves. For instance, women often shop for their family and influence what they eat or advise their family when they feel unwell. This role makes it particularly important that women understand how the choices we all make in everyday life can affect our mental health.
Women as carers
Most carers are women, whether they care for their children, partner, parents, other relatives or friends. Women carers are more likely to suffer from anxiety or depression than women in the general population. Three quarters of people who care for a person with a mental health problem are women and the average age of carers is 62 years.
Further Reading from SoR
Also be sure to check out the Revolutionary Lovers Guide and Women We Admire posts to celebrate IWD with Sisters of Resistance
Revolutionary Lovers Guide
This IWD make sure you are in healthy, equal and respectful relationships: http://sistersofresistance.wordpress.com/resources/sista-resista-library/revolutionary-lovers-guide/
Women We Admire