For most of you in Malaysia, International Women’s Day may sound very new and I’m sure you may have come across many posters of this global event while scrolling your Facebook timeline or while surfing the net. Unsurprisingly, many Malaysian students and adults (I’m not quite sure of the adults part) remain oblivious to how significant International Women’s Day is, so here am I, opening your eyes to why and what this day is all about.
Every March 8th, women around the world celebrate social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. Its all about having fun while pressing for change that women are as equal as men while promoting gender equality. If you have not picked it up, the theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is #PressforChange. You may have definitely come across stories, poems or even historical events of how women were oppressed, sidelined and stereotyped in the past and unfortunately it still occurs to this very day. Ever heard of Saudi Arabia finally allowing women to drive? In the past, Saudi Arabia banned women from driving and have even arrested and jailed some women that defy the law. Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman outlined huge plans to shift its kingdom’s dependence on its oil supply to modernising and reinventing its own economy. One of its major changes is to finally allow women to drive, from June 2018 onward. Malaysia too has its own Superwomen, we have that covered too!
Purple signifies justice and dignity, and its a colour for symbolising women. Historically, the Women’s Social and Political Union in the United Kingdom introduced purple, green and white to symbolise women’s equality but white has since been replaced with the colour yellow, representing a ‘new dawn’ which is used to signify a second wave of feminism and green symbolises hope.
2011 marks the 100 year centenary of International Women’s Day which was first held in 1911 in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland. Former U.S. President Obama also proclaimed March to be “Women’s History Month,” and their role and accomplishments in shaping the U.S. history.
So what about Malaysia? Stay tuned for our next post! We have a list of Malaysian Superwomen!