Magazine article New Internationalist

33 Years Ago

Magazine article New Internationalist

33 Years Ago

Article excerpt

...New Internationalist devoted a theme issue to the cause of women for the first time. 'Women hold up half the sky' was its title - a vivid phrase that had its origins in a Chinese proverb but became overused whenever Westerners started writing about the plight of women in what was then described as the 'Third World'. It was also rather a peculiar title in the sense that, as the magazine made clear, women were bearing much more than half the burden of poverty.

This was the first of many special issues on women over the years. Compared with magazines from later years, though, it is striking that the 1977 issue contained almost nothing about anti-sexist issues in the rich world, despite the fertile stream of ideas that were then flowing through from the Second Wave of feminism. There were articles from Yemen, China, Guinea-Bissau, Zaire, Mexico and South Africa - as well as a moving portrait of Roshana, a young village woman in Bangladesh forced to marry an old man who beat her. …

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