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International Women’s Day (IWD) is marked on March 8  every year. It is a major day of global celebration for the economic, political and social achievements of women.

Started as a Socialist political event, the holiday blended in the culture of many countries (primarily Russia and the countries of former Soviet bloc). In some celebrations, the day lost its political flavour, and became simply an occasion for men to express their love to the women around them in a way somewhat similar to Mother’s Day and St Valentine’s Day mixed together. In others, however, the political and human rights theme as designated by the United Nations runs strong, and political and social awareness of the struggles of women worldwide are brought out and examined in a hopeful manner.

The IWD is also celebrated as the first spring holiday in the Northern Hemisphere as the first day of March is considered the first day of the spring season.

In 1911 in Europe, March 8 was first celebrated as International Women’s Day. In many European nations, as well as in the United States, women’s rights was a political hot topic. Woman suffrage — winning the vote — was a priority of many women’s organizations. Women (and men) wrote books on the contributions of women to history.

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