Credit: Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com on Flickr, under Creative Commons (CC BY 2.0).
(WOMENSENEWS)–March is Women’s History Month and organizations are finding various ways to pay tribute. Here is just a small sampling of highlights.
Celebrations kicked off on Feb. 27 when Rosa Parks became the first black woman to be honored with a life-size, bronze statue in Statuary Hall in the Capitol. The statue will join a host of others dedicated to notable Americans.
President Barack Obama joined the ceremony, saying her act of defiance stirred a movement that allowed him to be president, The New York Times reported. The statue captures the “First Lady of Civil Rights” seated in a heavy wool coat, clutching her purse and staring out of the window, waiting for the police to arrive after she refused to give her seat to a white passenger on a segregated bus in Alabama some 58 years ago. The statue was authorized by a special act of Congress in 2005, two days after Park’s death.
Suffrage Parade Turns 100
A major milestone this year is the 100th anniversary of the 1913 Suffrage Parade, when more than 5,000 women and some men marched down Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C.
In commemoration, 14 organizations are staging a citywide, three-day celebration in the U.S. capital that will include exhibitions and special events and performances from March 1-3.
“History textbooks often say that women were ‘given’ the vote in 1920 and erase any mention of the 72 years women fought to be enfranchised,” Joan Wages, president and CEO of The National Women’s History Museum, told Women’s eNews. “The 1913 suffrage march was a turning point that galvanized attention for the campaign effort and created momentum for passage of federal legislation.”
In addition to its own display of artifacts tied to the suffrage movement, The National Women’s History Museum has joined forces with The National Press Club to mount a 1913 Suffrage Exhibit in The National Press Club‘s lobby, which is open to the public throughout March. The Atlantic paid tribute to the centennial by posting a blog featuring some photos from the march.
The Smithsonian is hosting Artifact Walls: The National Women’s Suffrage Campaign, 1913, a month-long tribute to the parade. On March 2 it kicked things off with the Women’s History Month Family Festival. Designed to engage younger visitors, the month-long exhibit includes musical performances and thought sharing on the museum’s “talk-back board.”
On March 3 the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority commemorated the 100th anniversary of their 22 founders’ role in the 1913 parade by retracing the footsteps of their predecessors–the only African American suffragists–in the 3.1 mile march.
March on March
Celebrities Susan Sarandon, Michael Bolton and Christy Turlington are just some of the famous names that will join a number of U.N. dignitaries to walk in “March on March 8” in New York City, hosted by United Nations Women for Peace. The march will begin at 12:30 p.m. on Friday at the U.N. headquarters and will end at Dag Hammarskjold Park on First Avenue, where there will be dignitary speakers and a special message read by Susan Sarandon from Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai.
Shoutout for Scientists
Throughout March the Association for Women in Science will run a social media campaign showcasing members’ achievements in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The group asks visitors to read about these women, as well as the 40-year history of the organization, and share and connect with them via the Twitter hashtag #AWISwhm, Facebook and LinkedIn. “Women in STEM fields rarely get the recognition they deserve,” Liz Ragland, communications associate of the association, told Women’s eNews. “We want to use the campaign as a wake-up call to celebrate our members and their achievements.”
Quilter Show in New York
From March 15 to Sept. 15, the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art in Brooklyn, N.Y., will display “Workt by Hand”: Hidden Labor and Historical Quilts. The exhibition will showcase 35 American and European quilt masterpieces taken from the Brooklyn Museum‘s decorative arts collection. “The exhibition examines the impact of feminist scholarship on the ways historical quilts have been and are currently viewed, contextualized and interpreted,” Catherine Morris, curator for the Sackler Center, told Women’s eNews.
Sex-Traffic Survivors Speak Out
Equality Now, in collaboration with nongovernmental organizations from all over the globe, will launch the year-long series Survivors of Sex Trafficking and Exploitation Share Their Stories. Each month survivors of sex trafficking will share experiences at www.equalitynow.org/survivorstories. By exposing the realities of sexual exploitation, Lauren Hersh, director of Equality Now’s sex-trafficking program, said the testimonials will help shape more effective anti-trafficking policy and help pass protective global legislation.
The National Building Museum and the Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation are planning an annual Women in Architecture series in Washington, D.C (the event’s original date of
March 6 has been rescheduled)
. “Traditionally women are absent in the history of architecture despite their involvement,” Nancy Nguyen, communications and office manager of the Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation, said. “It is our aim to change this.”
The Independent Television Service‘s Women and Girls Lead campaign, in conjunction with Eileen Fisher, Inc., present #SheDocs Online Film Festival, which will show 10 documentaries highlighting extraordinary women from March 1-31. The festival began March 1 with “MAKERS: Women Who Make America.”
Eileen Fisher, Inc. will co-present screenings of “Wonder Women! The Untold Story of American Superheroines” in seven cities in March, including Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Nashville, Tenn.
“The Women and Girls Lead campaign is one that we believe will inspire and activate audiences to learn about the plight of women around the world,” said Eileen Fisher, founder of the company. “We are proud to sponsor #SheDocs to celebrate women’s contributions to society and to engage in conversations about what is possible when women and girls are center stage.”
Ms. Foundation is observing the occasion by hosting a blog carnival. Everyday the foundation will post an article here featuring the voices and profiles of women from all over the U.S.
The International Museum of Women announced the launch of Muslima: Muslim Women’s Art and Voices, an online collection of international artwork, stories, writing and multimedia from contemporary Muslim women. “Our hope is that this exhibition will foster a dialogue between Muslim women and the larger community of women and men of all backgrounds who are working for tolerance, equality and justice,” said Catherine King, interim executive director of the museum, in a press statement.
Ending Poverty and Hunger
Heifer International is using International Women’s Day on March 8 to empower women to end hunger and poverty with Heifer’s Women’s Day Action Toolkit. Visitors to the site can take part in various activities, including donating, sharing via social networking, starting a women’s group or even sending a girl school.
Women’s eNews Celebrates
Also on March 8, Women’s eNews presents Bad Feminist Readings in our New York City office, in which six readers will satirize six anti-feminist titles. RSVP today to secure your spot.
Women’s eNews celebrates year-round with our Women’s History Walk: Opening the Way. Based in the bustling district of what was formerly known as Newspaper Row in Lower Manhattan, the walk highlights pioneer writers, abolitionists, suffragists and agitators. Click to book your place on this unique tour.
Victoria Fitzgerald is a freelance writer and a leader of the Women’s eNews Women’s History Walk: Opening the Way in New York City.
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