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Lesson Transcript

Culture Class: Holidays in Italy, Season 1 Lesson 8 Women's Day
Hello, and welcome to the Culture Class- Holidays in Italy Series at ItalianPod101.com. In this series, we’re exploring the traditions behind Italian holidays and observances. I’m Becky, and you're listening to Season 1 Lesson 8, Women’s Day.
Do you know that March 8 is celebrated as International Women's Day and is also known simply as Women's Day? Even though the day is not a public holiday, it’s still celebrated in Italy as well.
This festival serves as a reminder that for a long time women have faced discrimination, and is a celebration of the improvement of their social position.
In this lesson we’ll see how Italian women celebrate this day.
Now, before we go into more detail, we’ve got a question for you- Do you know the name of the Italian woman who received the Nobel Prize for medicine in 1986?
If you don't already know, you’ll find out a bit later. Keep listening.
This festival was first celebrated in 1909 in the United States, while in Italy, it has only been celebrated since 1922. However, it was only after the end of World War II that this day became an important holiday. The day calls for celebration due to the fact that after the war women could vote and also have a political career for the first time in the history of Italy.
It was one of the first women in Italian politics, Teresa Mattei, who invented the symbol of Women's Day in 1946, the mimosa. The mimosa is a yellow flower that’s found in abundance throughout Italy, and it blooms at the very beginning of March. For this reason all the shops and squares of Italy sell sprigs of mimosa to give as gifts to women on March 8 every year
As you know, Italians are very fond of sweets, and so naturally there is a typical dessert dedicated to celebrating Women's Day. It’s called the Mimosa cake or torta mimosa.This cake is so named because it‘s yellow in color and it seems to be covered with mimosa flowers. In reality, it’s sponge cake with whipped cream.
On March 8, 2013, the important airlines of Italy organized two domestic flights staffed with only female crew. In this way, they showed their support for Women's Day.
Now it's time to answer our quiz question-
Do you know the name of the Italian woman who received the Nobel Prize for medicine in 1986?
It was Rita Levi Montalcini, an Italian woman, who made important discoveries for the treatment of serious diseases such as cancer.
Well listeners, how was this lesson? Did you learn something new?
In your country, is there a day dedicated to women?
Please leave a comment telling us at ItalianPod101.com.
See you next time!