Women’s rights are about everyday life: equal pay, equal access to jobs, freedom from sexual harassment and violence. Violence against women across the world – how it is continually apologized for, excused, and legitimized, simply cannot be ignored.
Ashura Shabani, who lives at home, said that so much of the oppression that women face on a daily basis is a product of male insecurity – or a fear that many men have of female sexuality. Whether it is the husband who beats his wife for wearing a short skirt, or the clan which forces a woman to undergo female genital mutilation, the intention is the same: to prevent women from exercising sexual choice.
“I was humiliated and oppressed by my first husband because he did not want me to have a job. When I persisted I was beaten by him, so I reported him to the family and the authorities but nothing was done about it, as he is a filthy rich man. In the end, I could not take it anymore so I decided to divorce him and now I live for myself,” said Johanna Samwel.
“While Feminism has changed society for the better and secured many gains across the world, imbalance is still upheld in all institutions from religious to political to personal. There needs to be more determination than ever to protect feminism from being compromised or co-opted by the confusing, misleading messages of backlash against women’s liberation,” said Adam Kalingu.
Perhaps the most universal issue we face is violence against women and girls. It is shameful that in the 21st century we cannot name a single country where this stain upon the lives of so many women is absent. Until we combat the pervasiveness or this worldwide, women and girls cannot begin to realize their true potential.
Theresia is currently a journalism student at St. Augustine University of Tanzania, who wishes to explore and learn more about the field. She fancies movies, music, and learning new things everyday. She is a humble person who wishes to become one of the best journalists.