International Women’s Day – A time to pause and reflect?

International Women’s Day, Monday 8th March,  is a day set aside to affirm the advancement of women. It raises questions of social, economic and political emancipation. Around the world, women lack equal pay and representation in education, business and politics. Women of the West, after decades of effort and improvement, still have not completed their long journey. Others have much further to tread.

This is a day to remember our past and the struggles and positive victories of women now gone. Christchurch and Canterbury have been home to some strong, groundbreaking women:

  • Kate Sheppard MemorialKate Sheppard – a leader in the campaign for women to get the vote
  • Elsie Locke – writer, political activist, peace campaigner and feminist
  • Ettie Rout – most famous as a safe sex campaigner in World War One
  • The library also has a publication Unsung Heroines featuring biographies of Christchurch women, written to commemorate Women’s Suffrage Year, 1993. It demonstrates just how strong-minded and independent Victorian women could be.
  • Visit our page on International Women’s Day which links to on library and online resources including Contemporary Women’s Issues, a full-text database that brings together content  with a focus on the critical issues and events that influence women’s lives in more than 190 countries.

Let us grant greater generosity towards other women. Each day in ways great and small, each of us can help each other find our true place in the world – as women of courage, resolution and spirit. Such a journey begins with each of us, in our own backyards, in our own workplaces and in our own hearts.

Kim Morgan, Christchurch City Libraries

2 thoughts on “International Women’s Day – A time to pause and reflect?

  1. Jacqui 8 March 2010 / 11:24 am

    As much as many may think a day dedicated to women is not needed in western societies, but until women in Africa do not have their bodies mutliated for outmoded and spurious ‘cultural’ reasons and young girls are not sold into sexual slavery, then this one day at least gives us pause for thought about how much more needs to be done.

  2. Susanne 8 March 2010 / 11:44 pm

    Alot of people don’t realise that the majority of people hungry around the world are women… and yet these women produce 60-80% of the food! The answer to hunger, I really believe lies with women. You can also send a message of solidarity to women across the world for International Women’s Day at

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