Today I came across a link on Facebook. It backed up thoughts I have been having recently about the role of women in the modern society and how much things have changed. When the subject of ‘Feminism’ was mentioned to my 50% female sociology class there was an audible sigh, which is a shame. I believe most women will support women’s rights, however I think the main problem is that in the UK women are fortunate enough not to have too many problems to face. This makes a lot of women see sexism as a war that has been won, and people who continue to fight it- those hairy-legged ‘feminists’- are often seen as just a bit strange. Produced by the BBC for the 100 Women Season, this moving animated film displays facts about life as a modern woman around the world. The film has music in the background and the statistics are only displayed visually, so I felt it would be a good idea to reproduce them so that everyone can access the facts about sexism. The video highlights the fact that there are many issues faced by millions of women around the world that are hardly ever heard of in more equality-driven societies. Facts displayed on screen include:
- Women are illegally trafficked for labour and sex all over the world.
- 1 in 3 women will be victim to domestic abuse from a partner.
- Though more girls are attending school world wide, statistically women earn less than men doing the same job.
- 16 million teenagers give birth every year. In Niger, Africa, 95% of 15-19 year olds have had children.
- In Somalia 98% of women have been subject to female genital mutilation. There are many more countries with similar statistics.
- Not to mention the millions of girls who have been aborted, just because the family would have preferred to have a boy.
Some positive advances are mentioned, such as the fact that women now have voting rights in most countries around the globe. Women are also gaining more seats in parliament.
These figures show clearly that sexism is not a won battle. Millions of women are still treated differently and abused simply because of their gender. Though in the western world there is much higher gender equality, I believe women should use this power to support those who are not as fortunate.
You can see the video here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-24402849
You can also help girls in the poorest countries of the world to get access to these basic rights by donating to and supporting the Plan UK ‘Because I am a Girl’ campaign.