As has been a custom since 1986, President Obama issued a proclamation that recognizes March as Women’s History Month, calling Americans to mark IWD by reflecting on “the extraordinary accomplishments of women” in shaping the country’s history. Today marks a much longer tradition, the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day; a global celebration of women and their women’s economic, political and social achievementsand contributions.
The observance has its roots in socialist movements in eastern Europe, starting as Working Women’s Day in 1911. In some countries, it has become a custom for men to give the women in their lives small gifts, like flowers or yellow mimosas. The observance didn’t really take off in the West until 1977, when the United Nations proclaimed the day as the UN Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace. On this day, women are honored for their achievements and some organizations place extra emphasis on the struggles of women worldwide.
Events commemorating women are expected to occur in over 100 countries today. Reuters UK has been live blogging women’s headlines and events for the occasion all day. What are you going to do to honor women’s history today?