Last night Sheryl WuDunn, coauthor of Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women spoke at my university. She was great, and while she represented the huge challenge of oppression against women on the global level, she also told the stories of men and women throughout the world working, life by life, to empower women. Here is one quote from the book that I think puts the issue of contemporary gender inequity into perspective:
It appears that more girls have been killed in the last fifty years, precisely because they were girls, than men were killed in all the battles of the twentieth century. More girls are killed in this routine “gendercide” in any one decade than people were slaughtered in all the genocides of the twentieth century.