Why is Women's Day celebrated on March 8?

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Why is Women's Day celebrated on March 8?
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Why is International Women's Day celebrated on March 8? In reality the reason is not so clear and seems linked more to legend than to history. For a long time, in fact, it was said that on that day, in 1908 or 1910, many workers died in a fire in a factory in New York , but there is no historical trace of this event. A dramatic event dates back to March 25, 1911, in the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in New York, which caught fire while more than one hundred workers, especially immigrants, were locked in to prevent a strike.

A little history about March 8th

In America, a Woman's Day had already existed since 1909, on a different date, and in Europe proposals to dedicate a day to women began to gain ground in 1910, always in socialist environments.

The first large demonstration of women which took place on 8 March dates back to 1914 in Germany, to demand the right to vote; another dates back to 1917, organized by the workers of Petersburg to ask for the return of men from the war and bread. Italian communist women introduced March 8 Day in 1921 but within twenty years it was banned; then restored in the liberated areas as early as 1945. In 1946 it took on a national character and in Italy the mimosa was adopted to symbolize it.

In the 1950s, March 8 was opposed and even the distribution of mimosas was considered a subversive gesture.

March 8 exploded in the 1970s . The main battles were for equal pay, divorce (obtained in 1970), the general reform of family law (1974), the legalization of abortion (1978), sexual freedom. The feminist movement broke out . The word féminisme was coined by the Frenchman Charles Fourier who, in 1837, stated that bourgeois marriages were an instrument of oppression.

On 8 March 1972 a group of demonstrators in Campo de' Fiori in Rome were charged by the police

It was only in 1977 that formal recognition from the UN arrived, with the establishment of the United Nations Day for Women's Rights and International Peace . In the 1980s in Italy, until 1996, rape was considered a crime against morality and not against the person. Sexual violence was therefore one of the most heartfelt themes during the days of struggle. Subsequently, the social and symbolic meaning of this date seemed to weaken, becoming more of a celebration, sometimes with commercial implications.

In more recent years, the Non una di meno movement, born in Argentina, has returned symbolic strength to this date: in 2017 a global strike was proclaimed for the first time and demonstrations against gender violence, machismo, the inequalities that still they are alive in society and in different ways throughout the world.

Sources Treccani Encyclopedia
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