MARCH 8 is International Women’s Day, a day marked across the world with celebrations focusing on equality and respect towards women.
Starting as a Socialist political event, the date gradually blended in the cultures of different countries and in some places lost its political flavour, becoming simply an occasion for men to express their love for women in a way similar to Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day.
But women in Spain have embraced the day as an opportunity to defend their rights and protest against measures which affect them, with proposed reforms to abortion laws and domestic violence the main themes for demonstrations on the day in recent years.
In 2014, thousands of women took to the streets in more than 20 cities in Spain to march for their rights and shout out against inequality.
In Madrid, men and women of all ages marched behind a giant poster bearing three separate slogans: ‘Our uteruses are not for legislation,’ ‘Our bodies are not for abusing’ and ‘No cutbacks to our rights.’
Feminist groups across the country have called demonstrations and marches for this Sunday, March 8, urging the women of Spain to once again walk out and stand up for their rights.
Meanwhile councils and associations in just about every town or village prepare celebrations showing that although it took quite a while for equality to reach the country where traditional patriarchal beliefs and stereotypes kept women in the kitchen and men ruled supreme, the tables are turning in a Spain which while still strongly Catholic and traditional is now embracing modern views.