Women Empowerment in Germany and Pakistan

Published: 2021-09-12 16:30:09
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Category: Feminism, Asia, Europe

Type of paper: Essay

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Before digging in to details what women empowerment or feminism or feminist movement is? This moment is a socio political movement which was started in July 1848. Basic purpose for this movement was to promote the idea of the women rights and equality. Before industrialization, women were given all the rights they were supposed to have in previous two era’s such as hunting and farming but during the economic era, industrialization automatically defined the gender roles after which women were only kept to the limits of houses and their gender role was defined to house hold works only. To address this issue, a revolution started from America called feminism or women empowerment. This movement was taken forward into the forms of waves and it reached to the fourth up till now. The very first agenda of the feminism initially was to empower women politically and to give them right to vote which was accomplished in 1920 when women were given right to vote for the very first time. The movement keeps going through the struggling times and transforming in to different waves. Previous waves of the feminism were not that much successful as they should be. The major reason of the failure for the previous three waves was that the agenda of the movement shifted from equality to women supremacy which not only cause decline to the movement but also insist the activists to change their agenda. After passing through different waves and evolutionary process, this movement reaches to the 3rd and 4th transitional waves named He for she and me too which was initially started by Emma Watson but got hype across the globe and it was not only limited to the women but unlike other movements this movement was an inclusive movement which took women and men on the same page to strive for the equality and the basic idea behind the 3rd and the 4th was to include men to the campaign since they had to take their rights from the men and to clear this misunderstanding both of them should be on the same platform rather than moving in to entirely opposite directions. This movement with in very less time period spread all over the world not only first world countries but also in third world countries. The movement got a lot of hype and acceptance and there were lot of campaigns run by activists in those countries.
Since every campaign have certain limitations and boundaries according to the region and culture. The region from where I belong had also faced this kind of movement and same ideology is being observed in my country. In Pakistan, although feminist movements were in progress since the day they formed and carried by Mohterma Fatima Jinnah, but it got more and more hype and went to peak when some short films directed by Sharmeen Obaid Chenoi got released and won awards. In those films, she identified the core issues face by women in Pakistan on the daily basis. These movies led to major movements which were run for the women rights by the activists which somehow was a good step to identify the issues and gave women a platform to come up for their rights. It was a stimulus in the society that the society where girls were not even allowed to go out for the jobs and even in some areas they were not even allowed to get education. They were not supposed to go out without their families and all. Initially, the feminist movement got strong opposition by the public as the country have certain religious and cultural boundaries but by the time being it got acceptance by the majority of the people.The goal of every movement are set according to the mentality. The agenda of the movement got controversial while going through the transitional phase and the agenda seem to be shifted from women empowerment and equal rights of the women to women supremacy when the march being held named Aurat Raj which not only create the negative image of the movement but also cause the huge decline to the movement. The second problem with the movement was that the movement was run by the elite class of the society which already had all those privilege for which they were fighting and the problem of the common man or woman was entirely different. In addition, Pakistan feminist movement dig its roots deeper but there is an equal opposition faced by them in the same society where the problems are entirely different than the agenda of the movement. Although, this moment highlighted the main issues of the females in the parliament and the women right protection bill was passed by the parliament to acknowledge the rights of the women such as right to vote, right of freedom of movement, right to free speech, right to join almost any field in education and the professional career irrespective to their gender roles.
While on the other hand the Germany modern feminist movement began in 1888-1918 during the while-mine period with the individual woman the women’s right groups pressuring a range of traditional institutions, from universities to government, to open their doors to women. This moment was in form in Germany till 1918 but after that the modern waves of feminism carried forward the agenda and rights of the women to the next step. The Union of German Feminist Organizations (BDF), Established in 1894, developed to incorporate 137 separate ladies’ rights bunches from 1907 until 1933, when the Nazi administration disbanded the association. From 1933 till 2000 the feminism and the feminist movements were almost dead in the Germany. College’s courses in sexual orientation history were dropped for absence of interest. Ladies understudies pronounced they could never call themselves women’s activists; the word had a “humiliating lingering flavor”. But they were given right to education to the women equally as men in 1919. Not only limited to the education they were also given the right to do job and right to have equal pay as men in every profession civil services. These were the major changes which put Germany in to the list of the advanced nations in term of legal women rights. In the Nazi era, all the rights from the women were taken away when Adolph Hitler introduced new laws. According to those laws the role of women was restricted to only household jobs such as mothers and wives. They were taken off from the public and universities posts.
Although in 1944-45, major amount of women were allowed to work in the armed forces and other civil institutions, and after the World War II, the issue regarding women rights started again and gain popularity in the general public. In Germany, the process of the legal recognition of women’s rights came more slowly than the other countries such as France, Australia, and England. In 21st century, Germany also gave representation to the women in the politics and the German Chancellor Angela Markel has established her key role in the European Politics. Since Germany was listed in the developed nations, so there is more awareness towards the women empowerment in the country specifically when women were given right to join the politics and educational institutions. Since, it is the reign of the social media so it played more important role in the awareness of the women empowerment in the country.
If we compare Pakistan and Germany in terms of the women empowerment and the feminist movement, first of all we have to admit that in both of the societies despite having a lot of the cultural differences both countries have major number of women as its population and both countries’ women are capable enough to prove their metal in every professional field. Both countries suffer a lot for very long time regarding women empowerment and women rights. There was lot of cultural values which led the head of the states to take such illogical decisions. But the awareness in German public related to the rights of the women and women empowerment is much more than the awareness in the Pakistan. The major difference behind this awareness is that in Germany the literacy rate is up to 99% due to which Germany ranked 20th among 215 countries in the world. While in Pakistan, majority of the public is not that much literate to carry forward their thoughts regarding women empowerment and right after this very 2nd reason why in Pakistan there is very less awareness and still these movements are struggling to survive is the religious influence backed with cultural values involved in the state matters and whenever it is about the women rights country face lockdowns, protests made by religious culprits, which cause hurdles in the legislation, while in Germany almost everyone is aware of the rights and the responsibility and now there is acceptance among the people.
Moreover, the issues of the both of the nations are entirely different except sexual violence. In Pakistan, the public even don’t have their basic rights such as right to security, right to freedom of speech, clean water and shelter as 40% of the population of Pakistan is living below the poverty line. So, the countries like Pakistan has these kind of issue on the priority list of the governments. Movement in any country only become successful and productive if the population of that country have the basic rights and high employment rate as Germany have. That is the reason that in third world countries such movements mostly fail to achieve their goals because public don’t take deep interest in such matters as the priority towards the rights are entirely different. Specifically in a country where religion has its root deep in the society and people blindly follow the religious culprits rather than religion in such countries such type of movements usually failed or take too much time to grow. In Pakistan, the group of women who are fighting for the rights already have the right and are from privileged class while the problem for the women sitting at home is entirely different.
Although, we run movements to highlight and solve the issues of the society but there are some movements regarding communities which however run to highlight the other issues like discrimination in the society, such as movements for the rights of the blacks. Although, this movement was run to fight for the right of the blacks but the movement itself was the stigma which promoted the idea racism such as blacks are inferior and they need our support. They are not capable enough to get their rights. Same was the case with feminist movements. By running this movement, we inherently admit that the girls in our society are not capable enough to get their rights and they need someone to support them regarding this case, which ultimately make them dependent on others. At the same time, there are discriminations known as positive discrimination which society needs to create a stimulus in society just to highlight the issue and if this positive discrimination is able to highlight the issue and to break the taboo then we should encourage these kind of movements.
If we want to promote such type to gender harmony in the society we should exchange the cultures so that the values of the society can get evolved by the time. Because cultural exchange programs are the programs which identify the importance and the key values of different cultures, in which we exchange cultural and social values. Since first world countries and third world countries have the major gap regarding awareness and literacy, in this case we should conduct and support cultural exchange programs. In order to asses such crisis and break the norms of the society because when society gets stagnant and stop evolving then society start declining.
If we particularly talk about Pakistan, women consist of 51% of the population so we should include women in every profession of the country irrespective to the gender roles and now a day women are serving in civil services and even in military. Women do have important role to play in the society. In the era of economic warfare where every country is trying to achieve the equality or trying to move ahead of other country, it is the utter need of the time that we should let the women to play their parts in the society specifically in countries like Pakistan where women consist of 51% of the population. It is not an acceptable reality that without the involvement of the women in the professional life we will be able to achieve the economic stability in the society. Not only limited to Pakistan even if we talk about Germany or all over the world, women should treated equally as men, because just like men they are equally part or an individual of the society. Without involving women to the state matters and professions we won’t be able to attain the progress in any field. It is a proved fact that women are not less than men regarding any capability, although have biological distances and physical limits still women can play their role in society equally as men do, in form of doctors, teachers, engineers, accountants etc. However, it is compulsory to abolish the gaps between societies and spread awareness so that everyone can have their rights and contribute to the betterment of the society but at the same time it is also compulsory that we should keep cultural values and religious values in our mind and mold the movements in a way so that we can achieve maximum end result out of it. To achieve the maximum end result, it is compulsory that people have basic rights and the awareness to carry forward the agenda of the movements.
Such movements are successful in first world country because every person in those countries are aware of their rights they are literate enough to fight for themselves as the case with Germany although Germany was stigmatized and it became taboo in past that women are only for the household things and such movements were banned by the government of the time but they achieve the goal of the movement in a very short period of the time. The only reason behind this was the literacy rate and the awareness among the people. On the other hand, third world country people are not aware of their basic rights on the very first place due to which they don’t focus on such movements and such movements barely get successful in those countries.
In my opinion, women are the basic unit of the society. Society needs their contributions as an individual as the responsibility on every individual becomes double specifically countries like Pakistan where women are in majority we should promote gender equality in every walk or field or profession if we want to progress or get strong economically. Although, there are religious issues regarding women empowerment but it does not mean that it is compulsory to ask girls to go and work under the same roof where boys are working but to provide women equal opportunities which men have in every field. They should be given equal political rights but not in the form of quota system which itself is a discriminatory system, because every individual in the society is a building block of the society and have important role to play towards the progress of the society.

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