In history and in modern times, women are statistically less often recognized than men for their achievements. A study from Harvard Medical School suggests, “country-to-country variations in sociocultural dynamics — notably the degree of gender equality in each — can yield marked differences in men’s and women’s ability to recognize famous faces.”
Slate.com examined 614 history books and found that 75.8 percent had male authors and biographies’ subjects 71.1% male. Women’s History Month is an occasion huge to many. It is meant to highlight the contributions of women to society throughout time and can be celebrated in numerous ways, the point being to honor females, historical ones at that.
“We’ve always been a part of history but perhaps left out of your typical textbook, we’ve been invisible throughout history,” history teacher Mrs. Butler stated.
Good Morning America has revealed that, “Approximately one woman for every three men is mentioned in states’ social studies or history standards in place as of 2017, according to an analysis by Smithsonian magazine.” What this proves is that students are not being exposed to influential women nearly as often as they are exposed to powerful men.
Men and women alike both tend to agree that Women’s History Month is momentous and worth keeping around even if they may not celebrate it themselves.
Junior Richard Mong expressed, “There are magazines, books, and articles you can read to celebrate them by looking back on what they did and who they are.”
Some had very firm views on whether it was necessary to consider this a celebration.
“I think celebrating life number one is important, so to celebrate a woman’s life, or women in general is a worthy task,” said retired English teacher Mrs. Colleen Klaus. “The main reason I think is to uplift the status of women and make them recognizable for their efforts throughout history.”
After asking interviewees if a specific remarkable woman came to mind, they were quick to reply.
Social studies teacher Mr. Waller said, “There are several, Susan B. Anthony, Maya Angelou, and when we look forward in history people like Hilary Clinton might be recognized later on.”
Klaus named Sojourner Truth and explained, “All the women were finally getting the vote in 1920, all the women met in this huge convention and she wasn’t allowed to go in because she’s black so she wrote ‘ain’t I a woman,’ I really liked that.”
Butler confidently picked Eleanor Roosevelt, saying, “not just for women but for all humans well before her time she argued for the rights of all minority groups including women and was an advocate for human rights across the world.”
Subjects came off as involved and zealous with their focused eyes and quick speech.
During the Victorian period, gender roles became the most defined of any point in history. The Victorian Era wrote, “In Victorian literature, authors portrayed women with the lunar phrases of serenity and purity, whereas men were defined by the creative forces of the sun. The women were described as being small and weak,” showing why many women in today’s books felt the need to reinvent the female image.
It is likely the women of today facing hardships and altering lives for the better will be acknowledged in future celebrations for Women’s History Month and any or all events appreciating women and their accomplishments.
American actress Roseanne Barr once said, “the thing women have yet to learn is nobody gives you power. You just take it. ”