February Observances and Holidays

Continuing with the thought process in January that these observances and holidays are around for a reason and there is a lot of good information about them, here are the February dates!

Click here to go the full list.

4 February

World Cancer Day [WHO]

While most of us know the word cancer, there’s also quite a bit of shock when someone uses that word in association with us and our lives. Here are 4 books I recommend for getting familiar with the experience of having cancer or being in a committed relationship with someone who does. A lot of us have known someone with these disease and these books can help us either sympathize or know better how to react, not to mention would make a good review of material when that word shows up a little close to home. I’m just one of those people that prefer at least something to read to help me wrap my head around these very situations.

6 February

International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation  (A/RES/67/146)

For those unfamiliar with Female Genital Mutilation and the multitude of scars it leaves or it’s prevalence, here are some recommendations.

10 February

World Pulses Day (A/RES/73/251)

The context of this one is actually food based, which could be a great find for this year’s Read Harder but I don’t actually have any books on legumes specifically. Still, anytime I’m talking about food books, my go to recommendation is The 21 Day Tummy Diet.

11 February

International Day of Women and Girls in Science (A/RES/70/212)

I have a bit of an affinity for women in science. The thing about it is that all these women were doing things that we were rarely taught, their contributions largely overlooked and often talked about as one-offs and not that women could just do these things until fairly recently. I’m reading one right now called Broad Band that talks about all the women involved in making the internet, most of which we never learn about.

13 February

World Radio Day  (A/RES/67/124)

World Radio Day celebrates the most common medium for sharing information in the world. Far more homes in the world have radios than computers or televisions. Dear Zari was a BBC radio show about women in Afghanistan that covers a range of experiences from the abusive relationships often assumed in the US to the entrepreneurs.

Dear Zari: The Secret Lives of the Women of Afghanistan by Zarghuna Kargar

20 February

World Day of Social Justice   (A/RES/62/10)

Given that this blog has a whole feminist slant, I’m sure it’s no surprise that I have 24 books that provide social commentary with an emphasis on obtaining social justice.

21 February

International Mother Language Day  (A/RES/56/262)  

This day is meant to raise awareness to the disappearing languages around the world as globalization grows. As such, I don’t really have much for it. There is culture tied up in our language and the way we talk to each other. I took a linguistics class a few years ago that was fascinating. There are many nuances to the commonly spoken languages and then there are those languages spoke by smaller groups of people that is a part of their heritage. I live in one of those countries with a population that can get downright hostile if you aren’t speaking our language in public. It’s generally horrifying to hear people talk about learning English just because someone is in the US. There are many cultures and people who have spoken many languages here. I get that there should be some common ground, but there’s no reason to get nasty about it, especially when people are carrying on their own conversation.

To this end, I would suggest Strong Medicine Speaks as a book to learn about the importance of getting to speak your own language and having it disappear from your culture. In this memoir of a Lenape matriarch, she speaks about the loss of their language but also it’s recovery. When the US began attempting to wipe out the Native Americans in her area, Strong Medicine was among the people who held onto the land, blending in until it was possible not to without persecution. Others of her tribe had left or been sent into reservations who kept more of their traditions and language alive. Now that it is legal to practice their traditions, speak their language, and own their own land, this tribe is piecing back together the things that International Mother Language Day strives to raise awareness of.

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