Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Bread for all, and roses too

This post is to commemorate International Women's Day 

I was a young woman in the Australian Council of Churches" Commission on the Status of Women, when another member introduced me to the slogan "Bread for all and roses too" 

When women wanted the vote, they didn't just want the vote, they wanted good hospitals and schools and relief for widows and 'abandoned wives' and prison reform and all sorts of justice issues -for women and for all.Women wanted to have justice for all, but some beauty too.

Often women's crafts and arts are diminished and demeaned as somehow inferior or silly. However the skills have been passed on from woman to woman down through our families -the skills of taking a few flowers and putting them in a vase, or adding a tablecloth to the table, or embroidering a flower on a pillowcase. Just a softening touch to provide the 'roses' of beauty into our everyday lives. 

Hear is the song below, from the movie Pride on YOuTube
(PS if you haven't seen Pride- you must watch it!) 
As we go marching, marching, in the beauty of the day 
A million darkened kitchens, a thousand mill lofts gray 
Are touched with all the radiance that a sudden sun discloses
For the people hear us singing, bread and roses, bread and roses.

As we come marching, marching, we battle too, for men, 
For they are in the struggle and together we shall win. 
Our days shall not be sweated from birth until life closes, 
Hearts starve as well as bodies, give us bread, but give us roses.

As we come marching, marching, un-numbered women dead 
Go crying through our singing their ancient call for bread, 
Small art and love and beauty their trudging spirits knew 
Yes, it is bread we fight for, but we fight for roses, too.

As we go marching, marching, we're standing proud and tall.
The rising of the women means the rising of us all.
No more the drudge and idler, ten that toil where one reposes,
But a sharing of life's glories, bread and roses, bread and roses.

 I hung up a  purple green and white quilt this week in our entrance, in honor of International Women's Day.

Why purple green and white? These are, especially in Australia, the colours of feminism. This week marks International Women's Day on March 8.  Wearing purplewhite and green sashes was considered to be a “duty and a privilege” for campaigners: green for hope, white for purity and purple for “loyalty and dignity” (


\Embed from Getty Images

I wish us all a wonderful International Women's Day.

1 comment:

Nil @ The Little House by the Lake said...

I didn't know about the three colors of feminism . I thought it was only white.
Happy international women's day earthmotherwithin!