After thousands of years of attribution to the better life of the husband and children, women have finally fought their place closer to the man in the society. Since the ancient times the roles of men and women were distinguished clearly, and each had known what is assigned to one by his gender. The man have always been considered as the one having more value in the life of the couple, or society, as he was the one who had more strength, had to feed and dress his family, and had always been considered as being more able for various capabilities. Yet, with time women had started to understand that the differences with the men (physiological, biological and psycho-emotional), are no more than variations in the outer appearance, rather than inner limits. Through time, women have started to feel that they are enslaved by their bodies, which disables them to serve for greater purposes.
Thesis Statement: Women in the current society take greater and more important roles, than they did a few decades back. Yet, despite the fast increasing scope of women activities, the roles of men and women in the society, which are imprinted by cultural or religious gender expectations of human nature, the gender equality will not be established worldwide.
It is known by all that women make excellent mothers, housekeepers, hosts, nurses, cooks, teachers, etc. Those are considered to be more feminine jobs. Nonetheless, through the last few decades women have been trying to prove that they can also be skilled for other types of work, requiring more masculine features. Economics, business, law, science, and politics are the major spheres of expertise that the women are now trying to explore.
The first point of this paper is aimed at disclosing the importance of the role of women in social life. It is an obvious fact that socially women perform better than men. This touches such types of professions as education sphere, journalism, sales representatives, public relations, etc., due to their innate social skills. In addition, women are considered to perform better at multitasking easily, when a man needs structure and order in his work. The right for education opens the door to women to develop their innate skills and acquire the new ones, which will add to their recognition by men in the society.
The second aspect of this argument describes the role of women in the economics. According to the UN World Survey on the Role of Women in Development women are playing an important role on global environmental, social and economic areas. The Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat examines the crucial value of women being involved in “economic and financial resources in a broad sense, including resources generated at national level through budgets, trade, and development assistance; financial services such as savings, credit, remittance transfers and insurance; employment; land, property and other productive resources; and social protection”, (Department of Economic and Social Affairs, 2009). In other words, the striving to become equal with men has a positive influence on the development of the society into a better future with wellbeing of children or reduction of poverty.
Also, viewing such progress with time, the governments had made empowerment of women their plan, which they have committed to implement as one of the priorities. Implementing into life the international developmental goals regarding women empowerment and gender equality has encountered the problem of progress at a very slow pace. Nonetheless, it is unarguable that “inter alia, increases in educational attainment and share of paid work, deeply entrenched inequality persists as a result of discriminatory norms and practices” had performed considerable progress (Department of Economic and Social Affairs, 2009).
Third point describes the role of women in politics. Women in politics are fairly new; nevertheless have already performed rather impressive results. For instance, Lithuania has been taken under a wing of discipline, stability, firmness, yet care, and protection through establishing democracy by their woman president Dalia Grybauskaite. “When Lithuania took over the presidency of the Community of Democracies, the issue of women's rights and empowerment was chosen as one of the key areas of focus,” writes the president in her speech for the Panel Discussion “Women as a Critical Force in Democratic Governance”. Dalia Grybauskaite suggests a row of resolutions for the global issues, which are to be solved with empowerment of women. The president states that the “visibility of women and their achievements is even more important at international level.” (Dalia Grybauskaite, 2012). Highlighting the success of women taking top positions in Lithuania, such as Speaker of the Parliament, Minister of Finance, and Minister of National Defense, the President states that women are already making a difference in Lithuania, so they can do the same in the world.
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The place of women in politics is also supported throughout the world. In the American society, for instance, women in politics are very active. In addition, women show more commitment and success sticking to completion of the promises made in their campaigns. One of the most famous politician women is Hillary Clinton. She is 65 years old; nevertheless, there are few men or women who can compete with her in this controversial sphere of activities. Taking the example of Dalia Grybauskaite, Hillary Clinton aims at running for presidency in 2016, states The Guardian (2012). Hillary Clinton is not the only woman in politics in the US. Among the currently active women in politics are O.S. Walker, J. M. Granholm, J. Napolitano, M. J. Rell, C. Gregoire, etc. Even the Vietnamese politician Ha Noi at the 11th National Women’s Congress states that “role of women should be further enhanced in every area of social life” (VNS, 2012).
On the other hand, following some important cultural or religious traditional aspects might become the cause of prevention to the empowerment of women and their equality to men. Of course, some argue that according to the laws of human nature each individual is free to make choices in following specific cultural or religious affiliations. Nonetheless, such commitment creates specific limits of expression one’s freedoms. For instance, even though the number of presence of female members increases in India, the role of a woman in the society is still limited. According to Teaching about India: A South Asia Curriculum, the role of Indian women is very traditional (Greenburg). Arranged marriages are still exercised among the Indian couples, which leads to following the assigned holy matrimony roles: man is the head of the family, therefore he own the woman, which has to obey any of his will. Such may lead to oppressed expression of women’s rights and decreasing gender equality in India.
In addition, religious background might also diminish the capabilities of expressing the women’s rights throughout the world. The Muslim countries are noted as rating the highest numbers in gender inequality. According to the forum of the Middle East Quarterly, “gender discrimination began despite Allah's words and Muhammad's intentions”, trying to justify often too strict and aggressive behavior of Muslim men aimed towards their women. The Islamic countries still argue about the expression of Islamic traditions around the world by their women, such as the subordinate place of the woman in the society, traditions and rituals, matrimony traditions, right for education, and the freedom of expression in overall (Afshari, 1997). While the whole world is advancing towards equality between the genders, allowing both men and women exercise fully their granted human rights, Muslim women stand on the intersection between their cultural attributions and global development. This choice is undoubtedly crucial for begetting the equality and the expression of women’s rights throughout the world.
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To sum up, taking a look back at history of the woman establishing her rights and duties, one can note that women had taken a long route. From slavery and prostitution in the ancient Greece, recognition as potential companions and servants, to household and mothers of their offspring, women had to fight for their voice in the decision-making processes. Today, women are taking an important place in social life, economic sphere, and running politics. Yet, no matter how hard try, women will never be able to stand up and say that they have fully reached the equality with the men. The commitment to traditional aspects of cultural or religious background would always pull the gender equality and the place of women in the world back down.