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Proposal and 1st Celebration of Int'l Women's Day

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August 1910

Some 100 representatives from 17 countries attended the Second International Socialist Women's Conference in Copenhagen. The two main topics under discussion were ways and means of achieving in practice universal suffrage for women, and social security and protection for mother and child. Clara Zetkin proposed an annual international celebration for women on March 8 to strengthen solidarity in the common pursuit of liberty and equality. Her proposal was undoubtedly in honor of the 15,000 women that marched through New York City on March 8, 1908 demanding shorter working hours, higher pay, voting rights and prohibition of child labor. Their slogan, Bread and Roses, was a call for economic insurance and a better life.


The year 1911 saw the first celebration of International Women's Day (IWD) in the US, Germany, Austria, Denmark and Switzerland. It has since become an international event.

September 1921

The Second International Communist Women's Conference in Moscow adopted Bulgarian representatives' proposal to make March 8 International Women's Day in commemoration of women workers in the 1917 Russian February revolution.

( March 3, 2010)



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