10 illustrations of powerful women throughout history

Narjas Zatat@Narjas_Zatat
Wednesday 08 March 2017 16:30

It's International Women's Day.

And software company Sage have drawn up a list of ten “trailblazing” women from a variety of countries and across a diverse range of fields – including technology, the arts, medicine, sports, human rights and politics.

Of the project, Jacqueline de Rojas, Managing Director of Sage UK & Ireland – Northern Europe, said:

Having spent 30 years as a woman in tech, I’m passionate about diversity and inclusion in the workplace. I believe that shining a light on success and achievement inspires innovation and opportunity. In celebrating the accomplishments of these trailblazing women, we aim to inspire and empower future generations to blaze their own trails.

Here they are:

1. Frida Kahlo

A Mexican painter, Frida was famous for her feminist self-portraits in the 19th century.

Don't build a wall around your own suffering or it may devour you from the inside.

2. Laura Dekker

At age 16, Laura become the youngest person to complete a full, solo circumnavigation of the world. She still holds that record.

I follow my own head. And if I’m determined to do something, then I’ll make sure that I make it happen.

3. Malala Yousafzai

A staunch advocate of female education, she is also the youngest ever Noble Prize laureate at 17.

Malala survived an assassination attempt from a Taliban gunman and founded the Malala Fund, a non-profit organisation that, among other things, has set up schools for Syrian refugees.

So here I stand, one girl, among many. I speak not for myself, but so those without a voice can be heard. Those who have fought for their rights. Their right to live in peace. Their right to be treated with dignity. Their right to equality of opportunity. Their right to be educated.

4. Sheryl Sandberg

Sheryl is the chief operating officer of Facebook and the first woman to serve on their board.

She founded the non-profit Lean In foundation, which aims to inspire woman to achieve their business goals.

We need women at all levels, including the top, to change the dynamic, reshape the conversation, to make sure women’s voices are heard and heeded, not overlooked and ignored.

5. Mary Seacole

Seacole managed to conquer prejudice to set up a hotel that cared for wounded soldiers during the Crimean War.

From Crimean War Correspondent Sir William Howard Russell:

I trust that England will not forget one who nursed her sick, who sought out her wounded to aid and succour them, and who performed the last offices for some of her illustrious dead.

6. Ellen Degeneres

A comedian, actor, author and TV host, she continues to be one of the leading advocates for LGBT rights.

Do we have to worry about who’s gay and who’s straight? Can’t we just love everybody and judge them by the car they drive?

7. Michelle Obama

Michelle was the first African America First Lady of the United States and she championed women’s rights, as well as continuing to fight against global poverty.

No country can ever truly flourish if it stifles the potential of its women and deprives itself of the contributions of half of its citizens.

8. Indira Gandhi

Indira was an Indian politician and the only female Prime Minister of India.

Social change is brought about by those who dare and act, who can think unconventionally and who can court unpopularity.

9. Ada Lovelace

Ada was an English mathematician and writer, and her work on Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine has seen many regard her as the world’s first computer programmer.

That brain of mine is something more than merely mortal; as time will show.

10. Joan Clarke

Joan was a cryptanalyst who worked at Bletchley Park during the Second World War as a code-breaker.

Owing to her contribution to the Enigma project – which decrypted the Nazi’s war communications – Joan received an MBE in 1946.

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