HUFFINGTON POST
03/11/2011 05:39 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

This Week's HuffPost Family Dinner Download: Celebrating Women

In her new cookbook, The Family Dinner, Laurie David talks about the importance of families making a ritual of sitting down to dinner together, and how family dinners offer a great opportunity for meaningful discussions about the day's news. "Dinner," she says, "is as much about digestible conversation as it is about delicious food."

We couldn't agree more. So HuffPost has joined with Laurie to launch a new feature we're calling HuffPost Family Dinner Downloads. Every Friday afternoon, just in time for dinner, our editors highlight one of the most compelling news stories of the week -- stories that will spark a lively discussion among the whole family.

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This Tuesday we observed the 100th anniversary of International Women's Day, a celebration of women and what they have have achieved economically, politically and socially around the world, and in recognition of the inequalities and injustice that still remains. In the United States, although we've made great strides for women, it's important to remember that it was within the last century that women finally gained the right to vote, it was just 28 years ago that Columbia University began admitting women, and less than 50 years ago that it became illegal to pay a woman less for the equivalent work of a man.

As Hillary Clinton said this week, "women still bear the brunt of poverty, war, disease, and famine. And when it comes to the boardroom meetings, government sessions, peace negotiations, and other assemblies where crucial decisions are made in the world, women are too often absent."

Name three women who have been influential in your life. If you could have dinner with three women that you admired, living or not, who would you choose? What's the best advice your mother or grandmother has given you? Can you name some instances of sexism in the world around you? What are some ways we could improve women's equality? Has your mother ever been discriminated against or experienced sexism? How have women's rights changed in her lifetime?

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To see last week's Family Dinner Download, click here.

For more tips and recipes, check out The Family Dinner: Great Ways to Connect with Your Kids, One Meal at a Time by Laurie David and Kirstin Uhrenholdt (thefamilydinnerbook.com).

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