Recently, The Bank of England made news amid a furor of the lack of women (other than the Queen) on circulating banknotes. The Mirror performed an informal survey of banknotes in various world countries to see where the stand on the inclusion of women's images. See the article for a table of results.
Are banknotes sexist? Recently, the Bank of England has announced that popular novelist Jane Austen is to appear on the new £10 note. This followed in the wake of much controversy over previous news that Elizabeth Fry is to be ousted from the fiver.
Since then women rights activists have been campaigning to celebrate more female achievements on our banknotes. You could point out that our notes do have a portrait of the Queen on all of them, but otherwise only one woman was featured at any one time. But how is it in other countries?
Lets take a look, for example, at currency from our favourite holiday destinations.
Most countries have no women represented on their banknotes at all. Out of the 14 countries listed in the table below only 11 per cent of banknotes include an image of a woman. It’s not as bad as it sounds though. Some designs like the Euro don’t include people at all, depicting famous architecture instead.
A lot of countries also choose to use an image of their current leader. This includes the Chinese Yuan, Saudi Riyal, Russian Ruble, the Turkish Lira and of course our very own Pound.
Other countries like the United States have chosen to print influential political figures on their notes. The dollar most famously depicts Benjamin Franklin, Abraham Lincoln and other founding presidents. To this day there hasn’t been a female US president and until that happens we probably won’t be able to expect to see a women on dollar bills.
Of course, some feminists will rightly point out that since banknotes were introduced there have been women in our history whose achievements are banknote worthy. Look at Australia, for example. There are currently six females depicted on the Australian Dollar where there is only one note without female representation. In fact, most Australian Dollar notes have both a man and a woman on them. Now that’s gender equality for you!
Of course, they meant "founding FATHERS" rather than "founding PRESIDENTS", for Ben Franklin and Alexander Hamilton were NOT presidents. Martha Washington was depicted on U.S. currency, along with umpteen representations of Miss Liberty. But no Madame President yet.
To read the complete article, see:
Are banknotes sexist? We look at folding stuff from top travel spots to find out
Wayne Homren, Editor
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