Women’s Day 2020: History, significance and theme of the year
International Women’s Day 2020: Observed on March 8 every year, International Women’s Day is the celebration of the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women over the years.Updated: Mar 08, 2020 11:05 IST
According to the United Nations, the theme for International Women’s Day 2020 is “I am Generation Equality: Realizing Women’s Rights”.
International Women’s Day was observed for the first time on February 28, 1909, in the United States.
In 1910, leader of the women’s office of the Social Democratic Party in Germany, Clara Zetkin, tabled the idea before the second International Conference of Working Women.
After that Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland marked International Women’s Day on March 19, 1911. People poured onto the streets and participated in rallies campaigning for women’s rights to work, vote and hold public office.
In 1913, International Women’s Day was shifted to March 8 and has been celebrated on this date ever since.
In 1914, women across Europe held rallies to campaign against World War I. On the last Sunday of February in 1917, women in Russia began a strike for “bread and peace” against the death of over 2 million Russian soldiers in World War I.
The United Nations observed International Women’s Day for the first time in 1975. The UN General Assembly passed a resolution in 1977 proclaiming a United Nations Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace should be observed by member states.
In 1996, the UN started the adoption of an annual theme. The year 2011 celebrated the centenary of International Women’s Day.
International Women’s Day aims to bring together people of every gender, age, ethnicity, race, religion, and country and create a gender equal world.
UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, in her statement, said the world does not have equality at the moment and women are “radically impatient for change.”
She added that while there are some positive changes to celebrate, including a drop in the ratio of maternal deaths since 2000, the “best hasn’t been good enough.”