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women

Women's liberation and the fight for socialism

By Lisa Macdonald

With the advent of the long economic downturn in the mid-1970s, capitalism launched the most concerted worldwide offensive against women's rights in 40 years. In the neo-colonial countries, women are bearing the brunt of IMF and World Bank-imposed economic structural adjustment programs, the rise of religious fundamentalism in many countries is pushing women back into the dark ages, and women are the largely invisible victims in the increasing number of localised wars over the ever shrinking resources not in the hands of the imperialists.

In the former Soviet bloc countries, as the restoration of capitalism removes most of the protections for workers that accompanied the planned economy, it is women who are thrown first onto the scrap heap as privatisation creates skyrocketing unemployment and public welfare spending is slashed.

And in the imperialist countries, the gap between average male and female earnings is widening again, abortion access is under attack, and the right wing's propaganda campaigns against the so-called special privileges of disadvantaged groups and for the strengthening of the traditional family are rapidly gaining ground.

Unfinished business: the struggle for abortion rights

By Kamala Emanuel

January, 2000 -- Why abortion rights? What is the importance of this issue? For us, it may be obvious, but it's necessary to reiterate the importance of the right to abortion because of the attacks it continues to face, and because in Australia and elsewhere a generation of women have now grown up with relatively straightforward access to abortion, who may not appreciate the significance of this right.

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