Education International
Education International

International Women's Day: 8 March 2008 - Activism through art

published 6 March 2008 updated 6 March 2008

2008 is the 100th anniversary of women taking collective action on 8 March. To mark this milestone, Education International commissioned Argentine artist Nora Patrich to create a commemorative poster.

Patrich's painting, to be unveiled 7 March, depicts women of diverse cultures carrying books, symbolic of education, and bread and roses, the symbols of International Women’s Day. Together the women are emerging from a darkened doorway into the light of sisterhood and solidarity. The poster is available at: www.ei-ie.org/gender.

A painter, muralist and sculptor with a long history of activism, Patrich was honoured last autumn with the prestigious "Maestro de Vida" award from the Confederación de Trabajadores de la Educación de la República Argentina, an EI affiliate. The prize is granted to people whose life and work embody the social justice values CTERA promotes.

EI will present the poster in Brussels at an event co-hosted with the European Trade Union Confederation and the International Trade Union Confederation, which will launch a campaign on Decent Work, Decent Life for Women and a report on the gender pay gap. Please join us for the launch celebration:

7 March at 12.30 Theatre National 111-115 Blvd Emile Jacqmain 1000 Brussels

"On International Women's Day and all year round, teachers are working hard to make gender equality a reality in schools and society," said EI Deputy General Secretary Jan Eastman. "Quality education for all girls and boys is our goal, as it will give them the skills and knowledge to make their best contributions as global citizens."

In 1908, members of the International Ladies Garment Workers’ Union in New York marched to demand the right to vote, freedom from sweatshops and an end to child labour. Since then women have continued to mobilize on 8 March to assert equal rights, campaign for peace, and celebrate progress. The United Nations recognised the day in 1975.

This year EI is calling upon its member unions to support the global campaign to end violence against women which was launched on 25 February by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. "There is one universal truth, applicable to all countries, cultures and communities," Ban said. "Violence against women is never acceptable, never excusable, never tolerable."


For more information, please contact Nancy Knickerbocker, EI communications coordinator, on +32 (0) 476 85 07 01 or Nancy.Knickerbocker@ei-ie.org