Word Echoes from SANZ: “Women’s History Month”
Written by Helewise Arends on March 8, 2018
Women’s History Month is an annual declared month that highlights the contributions
of women to events in history and contemporary society.
It is celebrated during March in the United States, The United Kingdom, and Australia,
corresponding with International Women’s Day on March 8
and during October in Canada, corresponding with the celebration of Person’s Day on October 18.
In the United States, Women’s History Month traces its beginnings back to the
first International Women’s Day in 1911.
In February 1980, President Jimmy Carter issued a presidential proclamation declaring
the week of March 2 – 8 as National Women’s History Week.
Responding to the growing popularity of Women’s History Week, the National Women’s History Project
petitioned Congress in 1987 to designate the month of March as Women’s History Month.
Congress passed Pub. L. 100-9 requesting and authorizing the president to proclaim
March of each year as Women’s History Month.
National Women’s History Month is about recognizing the courage and contributions of women
everywhere who are breaking down barriers, raising their voices, and fighting for what they believe in.
The Theme of this year’s Women’s History Month revives a phrase that became
a feminist rallying cry last year:
”Nevertheless, She Persisted.”
“Nevertheless, She Persisted” is really about every woman who really had to use her tenacity
and courage to accomplish whatever she set out to accomplish.
“It’s universal,” said Molly Murphy MacGregor “you think about our mothers and grandmothers –
they’ve been persisting for a very long time.”
MacGregor said that she hopes this year’s theme will serve as a reminder that
lasting change often requires decades of determination.
The origins of the phrase dates back to February 2017 when Democratic Massachusetts
Sen. Elizabeth Warren was silenced and rebuked by Republicans during a debate
over President Trump’s nomination of Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions as U.S. Attorney General.
Warren said in a statement to TIME “Millions of women have taken up
“Nevertheless, She Persisted” as their rallying cry
because they know that together, we can make a change.
We know because we are doing it.”
In Australia, Women’s History Month was first celebrated in 2000, initiated by Helen Leanard.
Since 2005, the annual celebration of Women’s History Month in Australia
has centred on a different area of women’s achievement.
Women’s History Month was celebrated in the UK in 2011 and 2012.
The popularity of women’s history celebrations continues to spread
as more people are becoming aware of the contributions of women and girls.
BLOGGER: HELEWISE ARENDS