International Women’s Day (IWD) is celebrated on March 8 every year. It commemorates the movement for women’s rights.
While the first observance of a Women’s Day was held on February 28, 1909 in New York, March 8 was suggested by the 1910 International Woman’s Conference to become an “International Woman’s Day.” After women gained suffrage in Soviet Russia in 1917, March 8 became a national holiday there. The day was then predominantly celebrated by the socialist movement and communist countries until it was adopted in 1975 by the United Nations.
Every year, China celebrates International Women’s Day on March 8. Slightly different from the day’s original focus of celebrating women’s economic, political, and social achievements, Women’s Day became simply an occasion for men to express their love for women in manner similar to a combination of Valentine’s Day and Mother’ s Day (yes, many Chinese in cities celebrate these two holidays, which have been introduced from Western countries.)
On Women’s Day, women receive special treats. For example, female employees:get a half-day holiday, enjoy other festivities, such as a dinner party, a spa treatment, or a jaunt.
Many Chinese universities have an interesting practice on Women’s Day. Female college students created a new festival called Girls’ Day (女生节 /nyoo-shnng jyeh/), which is celebrated on March 7 every year. In China, “women” (妇女 /foo-nyoo/) is more representative of married women, and since female students do not like to give up the opportunity to be “queens”, they created Girls’ Day. On Girl’s Day, universities hold many activities for their female students, such as a make-up competition, a hand-make competition, the warmest quail-roost evaluation, and a dancing competition.
What’s more, some universities may make wishing trees or wishing boards, where female students can attach cards that have their written wishes (even professions to a male). In that way, March 7 is a sort of “Valentine’s Day” on campus because male students have the opportunity to express their love to female students they admire.
On 8th of March, the country holds meetings, festive events and awarding ceremonies, while men present women with gifts and flowers. But 8 March in China is more political in nature. This official holiday is a tribute to communist ideology adopted by China.