On International Women’s Day: “Why Is It So Hard To See Black & Blue?”

March 8 is International Women’s Day. 

“The new millennium has witnessed a significant change and attitudinal shift in both women’s and society’s thoughts about women’s equality and emancipation. Many from a younger generation feel that ‘all the battles have been won for women’ while many feminists from the 1970’s know only too well the longevity and ingrained complexity of patriarchy. With more women in the boardroom, greater equality in legislative rights, and an increased critical mass of women’s visibility as impressive role models in every aspect of life, one could think that women have gained true equality. The unfortunate fact is that women are still not paid equally to that of their male counterparts, women still are not present in equal numbers in business or politics, and globally women’s education, health and the violence against them is worse than that of men.” (Taken from the International Women’s Day website, emphasis ours)

Today, as we celebrate womanhood and how far along we’ve come since the 1990’s in terms of development and equality, we must also ask to see the harsh reality and ask the hard questions those realities entail. 

One such issue is domestic violence. It has been said that 1 out of 4 women will experience domestic violence during her lifetime. There has been various efforts throughout the years to bring awareness to this issue and my recent favourite is this: 

#TheDress in an Anti-Violence Campaign

What took the internet world by storm last week and launched a million trivial debates has now been transformed into a very powerful ad by the South African Salvation Army. 


Photo from The Salvation Army Website.

A full body spread of a bruised girl wearing #TheDress in white and gold asks readers: “Why is it so hard to see black and blue?” The advertisement shows us that there is still the prevailing problem of domestic abuse and that one in 6 women suffer from it. As we celebrate International Women’s Day today, we are reminded of issues like these that need to be given awareness.

This is one of a two part photo series that Salvation Army has tweeted. It is a perfect example of great advertising with a cause and great execution of redirecting attention to ask the harder questions.


What do you think about this campaign? Let us know in the comments section below.