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Landmarks for Women

An international timeline.

1792

English feminist Mary Wollstonecraft writes first major feminist tract, 'A Vindication of the Rights of Women.'

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1848

Queen's College for Women opens in Great Britain.

The first women's rights conference is held in Seneca Falls, N.Y.

1849

Female doctors are allowed to practice in United States.

1870

Married British women who are employed are allowed to spend their own earnings.

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1870

British government begins employing women for clerical work.

1879

French Socialist Congress is first political party to demand equal political and economic rights for women. (Rights are not granted.)

1881

French female factory workers are allowed to open bank accounts without consent of their husbands.

1893

New Zealand is first nation to give vote to women.

Finland is first European country to grant women's suffrage.

1917

New Soviet Union gives vote to women and declares equality of the sexes.

1919, 1928

Congress passes the 19th Amendment to US Constitution, extending vote to women. (It is ratified the next year.)

1946

Turkey bans custom requiring women to wear the veil.

1952

Great Britain gives vote to women.

UN establishes Commission on the Status of Women.

1960

UN adopts the Convention on thePolitical Rights of Women.

Canada passesan act prohibiting sexual discrimination.

1966

Indira Gandhi becomes prime minister of India, the first woman elected to head an independent government.

1975

UN observes International Women's Year and holds first world conference on women in Mexico City. Four subsequent conferences are held, the last being the 1995 conference in Beijing.

1979

UN adopts the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women.

1993

UN General Assembly adopts the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women.