Tuesday, September 1, 2015


Campaign for women's suffrage in Belgium, 1908.
Source: Getty Images
Feminism (n.):
Belief in or advocacy of women's social, political, and economic rights, especially with regard to the equality of the sexes.

Ah, what a dangerous word to (rightly or wrongly) bandy about these days. Or has it always been so?

In any case, the role of women in Belgian society, and particularly their rights and how hard they had to fight to get them, is the subject of this post.

Before Belgium's independence, when its states were under the control of Napoleon I, women weren't considered for much else except for reproduction purposes (or for men's pleasure, depending on which strata of the society you happened to belong to). For though he was behind great changes for his country and revamped the French legislature, among other things, Napoleon didn't believe those rights were meant for the "inferior sex."