1. The first Women’s Day was celebrated in 1911
The first International Women’s Day was celebrated on March 19, 1911 in Denmark, Germany, Austria and Switzerland. After the German Clara Zetkin had already demanded the introduction of such a day in 1910 to fight against unequal treatment and oppression of women, as well as for women’s suffrage at the time of the First World War. International Women’s Day has been celebrated on March 8th since 1921.
2. Official Women’s Day
Although Women’s Day has been celebrated for over 50 years, it was not until 1975 that the United Nations officially declared it “International Women’s Day”. Women should be honored for their achievements – regardless of their national, ethnic or cultural origin. Another 20 years later, almost 200 countries committed themselves to working for equal rights for women.
3. Public holiday for women’s rights
Today, Women’s Day is a public holiday in many countries. In countries like Angola, Russia, Serbia, Nepal and Ukraine, International Women’s Day is an official holiday on the calendar. In China, women have no work in the afternoon.
4. Women’s Day rituals
Women’s Day originally serves to draw attention to the rights of women and girls. In many countries it is also a tradition to celebrate women with small gifts or flowers. In Italy, for example, on March 8th women receive a yellow mimosa, which symbolizes the resistance fighters during the fascist rule in Italy.
5. Inequality between men and women
Women and men still do not have equal rights everywhere. Many curious laws still apply today. For example, in the UK, women are banned from eating chocolate on public transport. And in New York, by law, women aren’t allowed to smoke on the street.