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Here comes the bride

Fresh from this year's International Women's Day celebrations, this week the Radio New Internationalist team pay tribute to the women of the world and the challenges that confront them as a result of marriage. While changing roles of women in public life, laws to stop obstacles to education such as the marriage of girl-brides and greater availability to contraception are gradually improving women's lives, progress is slow. Nikki van der Gaag - author of the No Nonsense Guide to Women's Rights and Because I am a Girl - joins some inspirational campaigners for women's rights to overview the issues:

  • Over thirty years ago, Maria-rosa Dalla Costa from Italy and Selma James from England stepped onto the world stage to put the case for a wage for housework. Their book - The Power of Women and the Subversion of the Community - kicked-off an international campaign. Selma James outlines its impact then, and now.
  • Payal Nair - Senior Features Writer with Asian Bride Magazine - reports on how Western wedding culture has jumped into Asia, and brought the white wedding dress with it.
  • In the capital of the Philippines - Manila - men don't need to worry about putting a condom in their wallet because there's a ban on contraception. Lawyer Aya Fujimura-Fanselow has been documenting how the ban is imposing misery on the city's poorest women.
  • From one extreme to another, we travel to China - the only country in the world where access to abortion is unrestricted for women throughout their pregnancy. Yet - despite that country's one-child policy - abortion still carries a stigma. Ivy Wang has been studying how single women in China who've had an abortion are reacting to that experience.

Today's CD is called Jidka (The Line) performed by Saba, a truly international woman who was born in Somalia to an Ethiopian mother and an Italian father and who combines each of these countries' cultures in her music.

Listen directly online (flash 128kbps stream)

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