International Women’s Day, or Festa della donna, is celebrated on 8 March. The holiday originated in the United States and though festivities there have now dwindled to almost nothing, here in Italy it continues to be a widely celebrated event.
Women’s Day was instigated in 1909 when the American Socialist Party set aside a day each year to campaign for women’s rights. In 1910 it became an international commemoration day and the date would continue to be marked with large political protests by women around the world in the 1910s and ‘20s. It would even become an official holiday in Russia.
Women’s Day has become less significant in most western countries today though in Italy it retains its popularity, if not its political drive. Women are traditionally given bunches of yellow mimosa and a “girls’ night out” is customary on March 8.