for writers and readers….

International Women’s Day – a small carnival of interesting things

Women's equalityCough. Splutter. Cough some more.
I’m confined to the keyboard with a chest infection so I’ve been looking on the web for inspiration and information
First I had a look at the long list for the Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction 2014 (that’s the Orange Prize as was) at BOOK WORD, a blog about reading and writing and the words we use by Caroline Lodge. There are 20 books on the list (including Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch and Evie Wyld’s All the Birds Singing) and I haven’t read one of them. Yet.
Then I discovered a snapshot of the lives of 586 million women and girls in  India Real Time  by Atish Patel.
Since 2001 women’s life expectancy at birth has risen from 64 to 68 years. Literacy rates have also improved but the number of women in paid work outside the home has gone down to less than a quarter. That might not be bad news though as the International Labour Organisation thinks that more women going into higher education might account at least part for the fall. If you pop over to India Real Time to  read more you will also see an extraordinary sand sculpture created yesterday on Puri beach of a stern Elizabeth II with the message that every woman is a queen of hearts (surely a phrase more usually associated with her daughter in law Princess Di…)
I took a journey through the personal, political and economic struggles of women’s battle for equality over the past 500 years at The Women’s Library @ LSE. And to put it into context I read up on the news this week that a third of all women in the European Union have experienced physical or sexual violence since the age of 15 – that’s about 62 million women according to the biggest survey ever conducted on the subject. You can read more on the BBC news site.

On a lighter note this present is better than flowers – today the museums in the city of Milan are free to women.

Any gifts you’d like to have? Me – I want the term women’s fiction to wither away. It’s just fiction, right?
And do let me know if you’ve found anything on the web you want to share on International Women’s Day.

Cough. Splutter. Cough some more. I’m back to bed.

photo credit: WilWheaton via photopin cc

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This entry was posted on March 8, 2014 by in Muse and tagged , , , , .


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