Communist women of Turkey: March 8 belongs to working women

SoL news interviewed with the TKP Women Bureau on what March 8, the International Working Women's day, means for the communist women in Turkey
Thursday, 07 March 2019 15:42

SoL news made an interview with the Women Bureau of the Communist Party of Turkey (TKP) emphasizing the problems of working women today, women's oppression by the political power and the capitalist employers and resisting working women against this oppression. Communist women remind that March 8 belongs to the women of the working class and called on the women of the proletariat to fight together against the exploitation and oppression for equality and freedom.

What does March 8 mean for the Communist Women?

Regardless of gender, working people are going through the days when the exploitation of labor by the bourgeois is at extreme levels. The system cannot promise any hopes about the future. In order to break this darkness, we need to progress by taking lessons from our past, tradition, history. History is not going to reverse and we can not return to the past, so with these lessons, we need to take a big step forward.

On March 8 of 1917, the Russian textile worker women of Petrograd, who occupied the streets with the slogan of "bread and peace" launched the strikes that sparked the February Revolution. March 8 is an important historical day for the women of the proletariat.

This history has become an important reference for the socialist struggle. In 1910,  at the Second International Conference of Socialist Women held in Copenhagen, the struggle of working women was discussed and a decision made to determine an international women's day. After the October Revolution in 1921 in Moscow, at the International Communist Women's Conference, Clara Zetkin from the Social Democratic Party of Germany proposed 8 March as the International Working Women's Day and it was accepted.

March 8 is already widely celebrated as the Women's Day in the world. What do the communist women think about this celebration?

The United Nations, which closed its eyes to this day until 1977, finally recognized this day. But this recognition meant ignoring the emphasis on the working women and its historical meaning. Since 1977, the 8th of March has been introduced and even commercialized only as a “Women's Day" by the bourgeois order.

The system is trying to destroy the values that it does not want, empty the meanings of the values, and make their history to be forgotten.

Women are trying to be presented as flowers in a pot, ornaments in a showcase. They want us to remember and "celebrate" by forgetting our experiences and struggle for living and working humanely. Communist women want to remind again that March 8 is an important date for the historical struggle of the working women. It is important that the working class considers March 8 as a day of struggle and not as a day of consumption or showing off.

Why do you especially emphasize working women? Isn't it the day of all women?

Today's bourgeois order is advertising the day by trying to convince us that March 8 is the day of all women. However, the working women, as we see in the history of March 8, have never was in the same boat with the bourgeois class. They can't be. The exploiters have been the employers, the capitalists and the ones exploited have been the workers. 

Women of the proletariat work, they profit. The workers have to go to work in the dark, they are paid lower wages because they are women, they are accused of being pregnant in workplaces, they are sexually harassed, they can easily be laid off in times of economic crisis. The housework and taking care of the children are also the task of working women, and this labor is mostly ignored.

Despite all this oppression, they are expecting us to see ourselves equal with the bourgeois women in Turkey. Girls who are forced to marry at a young age, the university students who have to work to study, and the textile workers who lose their health because of unsafe working conditions are all exposed to this kind of ideological propaganda.

However, women who are forced to marry at the age of playing, who are killed because they resist the harassment of a minibus driver on the way home from school, who are raped and thrown down from the 20th floor by their employers, are the working-class women. Women who struggle to live and work every day constitute millions unless a few bourgeois women. That is why March 8 belongs to the working woman. It's one of the days when we remember again why we must struggle, and break the reign of this bourgeois order. As working women, we must remember that we must struggle together for equality and freedom against exploitation and violence.