3/8/11

International Women's Day!

Happy International Women's Day, citizens of the world! Did you know that this holiday was created by a famous German leftist and feminist, Clara Zetkin? And that it used to be international women workers day? And that in the Soviet Bloc it was celebrated like a mixture between Mother's Day and Valentine's Day, with candy and flowers for all the ladies in one's life? Now, I wouldn't promote all traditions of the Soviet Sateelite States (like, say, gulags, just off the top of my head) but I kind of dig this idea! Instead of being owned by Hallmark and having shitty ensemble movies made about it, International Women's Day celebrates all women, not just women who deserve validation because they are attached or have produced offspring.

I rather doubt that I will recieve some commi-red roses or any sweets today, but I decided I would celebrate by mentioning one of my favorite women of all time.


Emma Goldman

"Red Emma" is basically one of the most badass women in history. Born amid progroms in Russia, she emigrated to the US as a teen and was inspired to become involved in radical politics by the Haymarket Affair. She soonafter started a public speaking career that would last the rest of her life. She spoke and wrote about topics as diverse as family planning (she was also a nurse), gay rights, free love, revolution, and mostly, anarchism. She spent countless nights in jail for speaking about things most of us would consider fairly innocuous today. (Oh yeah, but she was sort of involved in an assasination attempt as well.)
She was eventually deported from the US to Russia along with other anarchists for seditious speech, and arrived in her homeland of Russia followning the revolution. Disenchanted by what she saw there, she broke with most of the left in condemning the violence against the population and starvation of large portions of the population while Moscow leaders continued to live in comfort.

In short, the woman never met a popular stance that she didn't disagree with. But she almost prophetically fought for what would become some of the major causes of the twentieth century, long before it was polite (or legal) to do so in public. And if you are looking for a kickass book to read, check out her autobiography, "My Life."

At any rate, I am also an international working woman, so I celebrated this morning with a special treat: a mango-strawberry-banana smoothie and two of Mihl's crispy cherry muffins. They were cinnamon spiked and supremely delicious, great preparation for a day as one of the world's countless working ladies.


Looking for an event to go to or something to do to honor WOMEN? Check out International Women's Day HQ for details.

song of the day: Le Tigre- Feminists We're Calling You!

8 comments:

Mihl said...

It#s still celebrated like that. At least in many parts of Eastern Germany. Come to Dresden and we give you commi-roses.

Mihl said...

P.S Your muffins turned out fantastic! I am glad you liked the recipe.

Fanny said...

I love Emma Goldman, have you read the book "memories of an anarchist"? If not, you should.

Vampire said...

My grandpa in Latvia called to tell me that...And of course my american stepdad totally ignored it :3 Meh

jessy said...

i've heard awesome things about Emma Goldman, but sadly i've never known very much about her. she does sound like a total badass - and i'm up for some badassness. totally gonna check out her autobiography. thanks, T! can't believe i missed international women's day - i shall make up for this, indeed. ;) i love the idea of that day though. so awesome! your smoothie combination sounds sweet and delightful, a perfect pairing for Mihl's crispy cherry muffins. which, by the way, look amazing! rock on, my friend - rock on!

Leslie R. said...

Nice post- and yay Le Tigre!

Anonymous said...

That is a really cool glass for the smoothie.... Where did you get it.... would like to buy... Thanks!

Ross Wolfe said...

Recently I wrote a blog entry offering a leftist critique of the ideology of “Green” environmentalism, deep ecology, eco-feminism, and lifestyle politics in general (veganism, “dumpster diving,” “buying organic,” "locavorism," etc.). I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on the matter and any responses you might have to its criticisms.

Long live Rosa Luxemburg and her longtime friend Clara Zetkin.