International Working Women’s Day: Marxism and women’s liberation

Posted: March 8, 2016 by Admin in At the coalface, Marxism, Political & economic power, Workers history, Workers' rights

Cuban militia women in front of building with mural of Che Guevara

Early 1900s Irish republican women's movement, Cumann na mBan: no liberation without the liberation of women

Early 1900s Irish republican women’s movement, Cumann na mBan: no liberation without the liberation of women

Today, March 8, is International Working Women’s Day.

There has been significant social change in the last century in the position of women particularly in developed countries. For instance, the idea that women should be paid less than men would be considered by most people completely out of step with today’s world. Yet nowhere has the wage gap entirely closed.

In New Zealand women are still behind in income by nearly 12 per cent. The gap last year increased, up from a difference of just under 10 per cent in 2014. For every $1 that men earn in New Zealand, women only get 88 cents. Even in female dominated jobs, men employed in those sectors have higher incomes than women. Occupational segregation remains and 44% of workers would have to change jobs to do away with that.

The pay gap has additional disadvantages, such as smaller savings to live off in retirement for women. The estimated savings gap at age 65 has risen from 28% in 2014 to 37% in 2015.

While the champagne breakfasts are taking place with corporate women complaining about glass ceilings  let us celebrate today the achievements of working class women. Those are the struggles that matter.


Below are links to a number of the pieces that have appeared on Redline about women’s oppression and the struggle for emancipation.

Right-wing women: ungrateful whingers

The real meaning of International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day – solidarity and struggle

Reclaim International Women’s Day from the bosses

Rosa Luxemburg on Marxism, class struggle and the fight for women’s right to vote

download (1)The working class militants who took International Women’s Day to Australia

Remaking the case for a woman’s right to choose

Getting abortion out of the Crimes Act

Abortion rights in New Zealand

Women’s liberation – time for a new movement

Working class women at Ford Dagenham fighting for equal pay

Working class women at Ford Dagenham fighting for equal pay in 1968

Class, gender, the 1960s and Made in Dagenham 

The birth of the pill

The poverty of patriarchy theory

The impact of women’s changing role in the workplace

Marxism and the fight for women’s liberation (2004)

Marxism and women’s liberation today (2014)

Factory occupation in Argentina discusses workers power and women’s liberation in the Russian Revolution

Women’s liberation versus capitalist quota ‘equality’

Related reading: Marxism and gay liberation


Women members of the Kurdish militias fighting ISIS. Picture: Reuters.

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  2. […] Marxism and women’s liberation March 8, 2015 […]