What is the history behind March 8th? What is the origin of International Women’s Day? Learn the events and how it is lived today.

History Of March 8th

More than 100 years ago, March 8th became the date that celebrates the rights won by women in all areas and commemorates the struggles to achieve them.

But why this date?

In the context of the Industrial Revolution, in March 1857, women workers in a New York textile factory took to the streets to protest against harsh working conditions. The workers’ mobilization was violently repressed by the police.

Years later, in 1907, the first International Conference of Socialist Women took place in Stuttgart, Germany, led by Clara Zetkin. Here the Socialist International Women was founded, whose main objective was women’s suffrage.

Clara Zetkin

To support the women textile workers, socialist women organized a strike that would prove historic. A year later, another socialist women’s organization held the first International Women’s Day in New York and Chicago. 15,000 women joined the mobilization.

Consequently, in 1910, during the second meeting of the Socialist International Women in Denmark, it was proposed to set a date that would serve to vindicate women’s rights. This is how March 8th became International Women’s Day.

The true emancipation of women can only be achieved through revolutionary struggle.

Clara Zetkin

Women’s struggles around the world

At present, countries from different parts of the world participate in the mobilizations of this day.

In Costa Rica

Women marched on March 8th to protest against the living conditions in Costa Rica for workers, as the cost of living increases and wages are not enough. On top of that, the burden of domestic work falls on women, which ends up representing a double unpaid workday. It is marching for the women who are no longer here and to demand justice for their femicides. And another reason is the struggle for Legal, Safe and Free Abortion and sex education for the Costa Rican population.

In Mexico

In the different states of Mexico, women are also mobilizing for their rights. For this country, 8M means a massive march of up to 90 thousand women in the center of the capital. They demand justice and equality: every year in Mexico more than 3,000 girls, women and adolescents are murdered and only 24% of these cases are recognized as femicides.

Although abortion was decriminalized in 2021, this practice is still neither safe nor free, so women’s reproductive rights are also being fought for.

In Argentina

What is the history behind March 8th? What is the origin of International Women's Day? Learn the events and how it is lived today.

Throughout the South American country, marches are held against sexist violence, against new anti-rights political figures that promote campaigns against the rights already won years ago in the country: the right to abortion and integral sexual education. The 8th March also lends itself to fight against the adjustment of governments that make the lives of Argentines more difficult.

The 8th March is celebrated in many other parts of the world, in different ways and for many other reasons than those mentioned in this article. But the 8M (as it is called in Latin America) is not the only time, nor the only day in which women fight: women workers, mothers, rural women, indigenous women, etc. fight to achieve their rights day by day.

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