About a couple of years ago I was working on a novel that had a strong female protagonist. The novel did not see the light of day but I learnt a lot about women’s issues by writing the character. If I summarize my learnings in three crisp points, they’d be –
A) It is strenuous and difficult to be a woman in various areas of life across all social strata
B) Movements like feminism fail to permeate to the bottom layers of our society where they are needed the most
C) The struggle to equality has only just begun
If we look at the design/corporate world, issues like pay-gap, lack of women leaders are far too real. Although these issues are obscure at the start of a women’s career, signs of them manifest quickly as a woman moves up the ladder.
Events and celebrations like Women’s Day are special, because they remind us of these discriminations around us and give us hope and courage to fight them off.
This year, DesignWhine got an opportunity to interview twenty five inspiring, successful, talented and amazing women designers who shared some of their insights and experiences owing to the issues of women in our industry. I am greatly indebted to each one of these women for taking out the time to be a part of this! Thank you so much!
This issue is special in every manner. While working on this issue and hiring freelancers to work for us, DesignWhine has achieved a perfect gender ratio of 1:1! The core team consists of one woman and one man and the freelancers’ team consists of two women and two men working remotely from every corner of the world. We were conscious to bring in equal representation of women in our small venture and we’re glad it finally happened.
However, there’s also a narrative widely gaining popularity that suggests there shouldn’t be any Women’s Day because there’s no Men’s Day. But this narrative is flawed. Centuries’ of history behind us has been a testimony to the fact that patriarchy has plagued all societies across the world. We celebrate Women’s Day to remind ourselves of gender equality and a corresponding day for men would defeat the very purpose. Agreed, some of the women around us might be lucky to not experience discrimination and that’s amazing but for every handful of such lucky women there are thousands who’re not.
And celebrations like these should continue till a cent percent of our women answer in the negative to the question – “Do you think gender discrimination exists?”
Till then, the struggle and the celebration must go on.
This article was last updated on November 27, 2023; Originally published on March 3, 2021