International Women’s Day 2022 went by in a breeze! We made a hue and cry about women’s rights, posted our wishes, and even paid our dues by getting dressed, having fun, and showing ‘respect‘ for women. Now what? Do we go back to violence against women, the gender wage gap, and inherent sexism for the rest of the year?
We observe No-Shave November to raise cancer awareness among men. Similarly, women also surely deserve an entire month just for their accomplishments and achievements. However, the significance of Women’s History Month originated in America. And unfortunately, in India, we do not observe this. But, it won’t harm to learn what Women’s History Month is. Eventually, we may move closer to one day dedicating an entire month to women in India.
What’s ‘Women’s History Month’?
March is Women’s History Month, celebrated in America. Women in history have worked tirelessly to achieve the rights and privileges that a modern woman enjoys today. Women’s history month acknowledges this struggle. The efforts of women in history to fight against inequality has made it easier for the present generation. We owe gratitude to these women for breaking their silence by raising their voices against unjust norms and stereotypes. Culture, science, and literature have received equal contributions from women across the world. We must recognize and celebrate their contributions. To commemorate these milestones, women’s history month came about.
The Significance of Women’s History Month
We can trace the emergence of WHM back to 1978 during a weeklong celebration organized by the school district of Sonoma, California. Schools held presentations. Students participated in essay contests. Santa Rosa saw a number of parades held. This tradition spread throughout the years within different schools. In 1980, U.S President Jimmy Carter declared March 8th as National Women’s History Week. A resolution was passed and the celebration was extended to the entire month. March 8 is celebrated as International Women’s Day across the world.
3 reasons why Women’s History Month is important
Here is a reminder of why this month is necessary:
- Fighting underrepresentation: For many years, women were underrepresented in historical literature. It’s not because they are not making key discoveries or assisting in major victories. It’s mostly due to the fact that for thousands of years, men recorded a huge portion of historical texts.
- Claiming back our rights: Women did not possess basic human rights, property rights, or the right to vote. They underwent discrimination, harassment and prejudice on a day to day basis. Women’s history month allows us to learn about women who stood up for their rights.
- Because women deserve recognition: Women are great at all the things they do. From household duties to dismantling patriarchy, from running businesses to running countries. And women’s history month is the right time to shine a light on all of the things women achieve day after day.
Should we have a women’s month in India?
In the modern-day, a lot of people (a.k.a misogynists) may complain about why women should have an entire month dedicated to them. We hope we don’t associate with these people. But we strongly believe that women do deserve a women’s month celebration, especially here in India.
Women in India struggle with a lot that a single International Women’s Day can’t possibly shed light on. Hopefully, as more people realize the importance of Women’s History Month, chances are that we may soon dedicate an entire month to celebrating a national women’s month in the country.