Today is the 101st anniversary of International Women's Day, a date to celebrate the achievements of women around the world. Yet it’s also an occasion to keep in mind that challenges still remain for women to overcome in areas like gender equality and socioeconomic opportunities.
Recently Newsweek selected its list of “150 Fearless Women” that included numerous figures from Latin America including the presidents of Argentina (Cristina Fernandez) and Brazil (Dilma Rousseff). Others chosen for the list may not be heads of state but their activism has not gone unnoticed. One of these women is Camila Vallejo.
The 23-year-old undergraduate student became the face of last year’s protests for educational reform in demonstrations. “The head of the student revolution shook up a nation and a continent,” according to Newsweek’s description of Vallejo though she does not lead the main student protest group anymore, Vallejo has continued to campaign for the rights of students to a fair and worthwhile education.
Vallejo’s selection to the Newsweek list, along with ex-president Michelle Bachelet, has not been viewed favorably by some of Chile’s politicos. Yet in a year of protests ranging from the Occupied movement in the U.S. to the civilian revolts in the Middle East, Vallejo represented to her supporters a symbol of the strength and activism of women:
Online Sources- Newsweek, La Tercera, UPI
Video Source – YouTube via AFP