Israel Says

Reflecting On Women's History Month

The month of March is recognised in the United Kingdom as a month to celebrate the history of women around the world and their continuing fight for equality. It was purposefully chosen so that it would coincide with International Women’s Day on 8th March. Given Britain’s history of being a patriarchal society, it should come as no surprise that women were not always treated as equal to men (Side note: There have only been 8 female monarchs, as women could not traditionally inherit the throne). This is still the case today in many aspects, but thankfully a lot of progress has been made. 

However, as important as the feminist movement was and is, racism and the intentional exclusion of women of colour cannot be ignored or forgotten. The fight for women’s rights did not always mean all women, as first-wave (liberal) feminism was mainly for white women and legal equality. Nevertheless, with every wave the movement has become more intersectional, with different issues coming to light, producing what we see today.

Despite the movement, gender inequalities still exist in 2021. The pandemic has seen an increase in domestic violence, especially towards women. The recent high-profile cases of femicide in this country coupled with troubling statistics related to sexual harassment have prompted debates about how we interact with each other vs. how we ought to.

I have heard female students saying how fed up they are with the lack of respect shown towards them and their dissatisfaction with their male peers who don’t do enough about it. I recognise my privilege as a man and I know that there are some things I will never have to experience because of it. Nevertheless, even though I’m not able to single-handedly change society as a whole, there are little things I can do that can positively impact the women around me. I wouldn’t be where I am today without some very important women in my life. I owe it to them to do my part and I encourage you to do the same.

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