As women in 2020 we have so much to be grateful for. There are plenty of things we need to work on for a progressive future for women, but throughout history there have been plenty of women that have fought for the rights we have today. Strong women have paved the way for female empowerment and we should all look up to them for their bravery and resilience. These women have fought for what they believe is right and have left a positive impact on the world. Here are 10 inspiring women of the past and present for you to look up to.
1. Malala Yousafzai
Malala is a Pakistani woman who has been fighting for human rights since she was 11-years old. The Taliban took control of her town when she was 11 and they took away girls right to go to school. She spoke up in support in girls being allowed to go to school, and nothing could stop her. She was even shot and continued her mission. She established a Malala Fund, which is a charity that gives every girl an opportunity to have the future she wants. She truly is an inspiring woman.
2. Michelle Obama
One of many inspiring women is Michelle Obama. She was the first lady of the United States and used her position to promote progression for human rights and kindness. She is a role model for women and advocated for the youth and many other groups throughout her time in the White House. Although she was not the president she did not let that stop her from promoting human rights and women empowerment. Even after leaving the white house she continues to use her platform to always be inspiring women.
3. Mother Teresa
Mother Teresa was inspiring women during her entire life. She dedicated her entire life to helping other people and led a life full of kindness and selflessness. She devoted her life to caring for the sick and poor and eventually became a Catholic saint. She set a great example for other women by living a completely selfless life. She is inspiring women today to be kind to everyone and focus some of their energy on serving others.
4. Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift is one of the biggest pop stars of today. She constantly uses her fame for the purpose of inspiring women. She uses her fame lifting people out and stands up for what she believes. She encourages people to be politically active and is a role model for young girls. She wants every woman to know how much they are worth and truly loves her fans. She is a great example of a modern day woman inspiring women.
5. Oprah Winfrey
Oprah’s entire career is based on her inspiring women as well as the masses. She is completely selfless and a philanthropist. She put herself in the public eye and has been serving others ever since then. She has given many great opportunities to people, including creating a school for girls in Africa. Her selflessness is what made her so popular amongst the world. She did so well with achieving her goals that she became the first black and female billionaire in history. Her career sends a message to people that says helping others can give you success. This message is extremely important and it is continuously inspiring women.
6. Amelia Earhart
Amelia Earhart is inspiring women by following her dreams in a world dominated by men. She set a goal to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean and was continuously told she couldn’t because that profession was for men. She paved the way for women to follow whatever dream they have no matter how big or small the dream is. She achieved her dreams and was the first woman in history to receive the Distinguished Flying Cross. Nothing could hold her back and she lived a life full of adventure and truth to herself. Her resilience tells women they can be anything they want to be even if it is not what society expects you to be.
7. Rosa Parks
Everyone knows the Rosa Parks story and it has been inspiring women for decades. Her actions were seen as defiant at the time, but she was a great part of a movement that is still happening today. She stood up for what she believed in (no pun intended) and it changed the course of history. Her actions sent a message that if you see something that is wrong, you should not follow blindly. You should use your voice and your power to change what is wrong. She is proof that one person truly can make a difference.
8. J.K. Rowling
J.K Rowling’s rags to riches story is filled with dedication, hope, and resilience. Before publishing the Harry Potter series she was living off of unemployment benefits as a struggling single mother. The Harry Potter series was rejected 12 times before being published. Despite the rejection and financial struggles, she kept believing in herself pushed through the hardship. She fought her her success and this caused her to become one of the bestselling authors of all time. She has sold over 500 million copies of Harry Potter and they were picked up for a movie series. She is inspiring women to never give up no matter how many times they are told it’s impossible.
9. Emma Watson
Emma Watson landed the role of Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter movie series. The grew up in the public eye and has used her platform to be a human rights activist. She is inspiring women by showing them that they have a voice and should use it to stand up for what is right. She is a feminist icon and is constantly advocating for gender equality. She is truly a modern day activist.
10. Frida Kahlo
Frida Khalo is one of the greatest painters of Mexico. Her art was very popular and she was very successful. During her career she was severely injured in a bus accident. She had a broken spinal column, a broken collarbone, broken ribs, a broken pelvis, and 11 fractures in her right leg, a crushed foot, and i dislocated shoulder. Despite this life changing accident she continued painting and became a political activist. Her story sends a message that no matter what hardship you go through, you can get through it.
What women inspire you? Let us know who they are and why they’re important to you.
My name is Kayleigh Hughes and I am a senior at the University of Arkansas majoring in Communication. I'm just a 20-something college student trying to figure everything out like everybody else. I love to travel, sing, and adventure. I'm just here trying to do everything that makes me happy.