Wonder Women: Female Heroines Changing The World – Now and Then
Throughout history and beyond cultures, religions, ideas, and stereotypes, women and girls faced (and still face) a long and hard road filled with countless challenges, injustices, trials, and problems. But some of them didn’t stop there and tried to do more. They didn’t accommodate with imposed rules and they overcame troubles. They managed to break through barriers and doing so, they actually change the whole world, regardless of society’s expectations for them.
And they say that behind every great man is an amazing woman. That might be true, looking around. But, none of these powerful women stood behind their husbands, fathers, brothers. They stood right there with them and in some cases, they took the position and stood in front of them.
There are many female heroes we can find looking way back at our history. These females gave another shape to the course of history. How did they do that? With courage! And with intelligence, strength, leadership attributes. They didn’t and they still don’t know what fear is. These are the role models we should look up for.
We call them strong brave women who did their part, both big and small, to make the world a better place for everyone, not just women and girls. I think the best name for them is this – female heroes.
A few weeks ago, I wrote another blog post about how powerful women really are here – Women Hold Up Half The Sky! Yes, they do possess some super-power and they do hold half the sky. They did it, they do it and they will always do it.
Today, with the movie “Wonder Woman” blowing up the cinematic charts these days, I figured we should focus on women once again. The shortest summary of this amazing movie is this – don’t tell a woman she can’t do something because in 2 seconds she will prove you the opposite.
And Margaret Thatcher seems to agree with Wonder Woman. Here’s what she has to say about powerful women – “If you want something said, ask a man; if you want something done, ask a woman”.
Doing my research for this, I actually found some names that never crossed my path before. I did find the ones that we learn about at school, the ones we read about in history books. I found all of them.
So, these are the women who changed history forever with their strong and brave characters. It’s a 3 ways list with a few of famous influential women – from artists to politicians, humanitarians, scientist, to queens and little girls.
The Not-So-Famous Wonder Women:
Here is a short list of amazing women you may not know about:
1 – Kathrine Switzer – she was the first woman to run The Boston Marathon in 1967. When the organizers realized that it was a woman running, they tried to tackle her. They couldn’t stop her, so he completed the race.
2 – Valentina Tereshkova – she’s a Russian retired cosmonaut and she is the first woman ever to have flown in Space aboard the Vostok 6. She was selected from 400 applicants.
3 – Amelia Earhart – was the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean.
4 – Eliza Leonida Zamfirescu – she was the first engineer woman in the world. Some say that she was the first in Europe only. Still. she helped to the discovery of new resources of coal, shale, natural gas, chromium, bauxite, and copper.
5 – Sofia Ionescu-Ogrezeanu – she was a Romanian neurosurgeon and she is considered to be the first neurosurgeon in the world.
6 – Bertha Von Suttner – she was the first woman peace activist and for that she was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize, becoming the first woman to win a Nobel Prize.
7 – Maria Teresa De Filippis – she was an Italian racing driver and she is the first Female driver to compete in Formula 1. She wasn’t successful, but she is remembered as a pioneer for this sport.
8 – Ada Lovelace – she was a mathematician and she is considered to have written the first algorithm program designed for computer programs. That way she became the first computer programmer in history in 1840.
Even though I didn’t know some of these great females, I know that women can do whatever they think of. And these examples are nothing but demonstrations of that.
The Famous Wonder Women
Here are some daring women in history we all know about, we learned and read all about them. And we also admire!
1 – Anne Frank – she was a Jewish diarist and writer. I personally admire her so bad, because she was so little but so brave. Because of her diary, she is one of the most discussed Jewish victims of the Holocaust. When Netherlands was occupied, she and her family went into hiding for two years. During this time, Anne kept a journal and wrote whatever was on her young, but also so mature mind – “The weak die out and the strong will survive and will live on forever”. They were discovered and sent to concentration camps, Anna died few weeks before the war ended.
2 – Margaret Thatcher – she was the first female Prime Minister of Great Britain. She actually governed for more than 10 years and she focused on individual responsibility and duty and on free markets.
3 – Mother Teresa – she was a Catholic nun, original from Macedonia. She worked mostly in India, but her charity work went international, helping with hospital patients in Lebanon during the war, she worked in Armenia after a big earthquake and helped with famine victims in Ethiopia. Mother Teresa also started the Order of the Missionaries of Charity, a congregation dedicated to helping the sick and poor. For that, she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979, for her entire work.
4 – Marie Curie – even if she was born in Warsaw, she became the first woman Professor of General Physics in the Faculty of Sciences at the Sorbonne in 1906. She mastered in physics and mathematical sciences. That way she became the first woman to obtain a Science Degree. Curie is also the first person to win two Nobel Prizes.
5 – Joan of Arc – she’s considered a French heroine and she was canonized as a Roman Catholic saint. During the Lancastrian phase of the Hundred Years War, she declared that she received mystical visions. And so, at the age of 18, she led the French army to defeat the English at the Battle of Orléans. She was captured and burned at the stake by the English people. She is seen as a mythic persona because of her role in liberating the French.
6 – Indira Gandhi – the first and the only female prime minister in India, serving between 1966 and 1984. She was a controversial figure, being accused of authoritarian inclinations. But she was also very powerful, she won the war with Pakistan from which Bangladesh resulted. She was assassinated by her bodyguards after she ordered to storm their holy temple – the Golden Temple.
7 – Catherine the Great – history also knows her as Catherine II. She is one of the most famous women in history. Born as a German princess, she actually got to rule Russian after marrying Grand Duke Peter. And she did that for 34 years, she overthrew her husband and she assumed complete power over the Russians. Her work consists of modernizing Russia, she defeated the Ottoman Empire during two big wars. She is responsible for Russia’s expansion over three continents. Her life is known as a dangerous one, as she managed to put down the Pugachev Rebellion, a dangerous revolt. Her 34 years of control are known as the Golden Age of the Russian Empire.
8 – Cleopatra – the iconic woman known as the last Pharaoh of Ptolemaic Egypt. She became popular in culture for being intelligent and for improving Egypt’s economy and reputation. She also gained popularity because of her love affair with Roman Leaders Marc Anthony and Julius Caesar.
Other Wonder Women I Have To Mention:
1 – Coco Chanel – one French fashion designer that innovated and revolutionized feminine style during the 20th Century. She took traditional male clothes and she redesigned them for women.
2 – Eleanor Roosevelt – the wife and the political aide of F.D. Roosevelt, the American president. She brought a notable enrichment to the field of human rights, the only issue she actually made her fight for all of her life. She was the head of UN human right commission when she helped to write the declaration of human rights.
3 Queen Elizabeth – she ascended to the British throne in 1952 and she’s reigning to this day. Elizabeth is the longest serving British monarch. 12 presidents changed in the USA during her reign. During these years she witnessed some social and economic changes. She influenced the unifying process for Britain and the Commonwealth.
4 – Billie Jean King – she was the greatest American tennis player and she was the biggest tennis champion ever. Not only she was amazing playing the “white sport”, she won 67 professional titles at Wimbledon, but she also fought for equal pay for both men and women.
5 – Malala Yousafzai – A Pakistani schoolgirl who survived being shot in the head by the Taliban, she resisted the threats and she started to campaign for the right to education, where they banned girls for going to school. Now she’s a global advocate for women’s right, not only for education. She’s the youngest-ever Nobel Prize laureate and she’s still thriving today.
Since I mentioned Eleanor Roosevelt, I found this awesome quote about the moment when a female becomes more powerful – and that is during hard times. “A woman is like a tea bag – you can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water”. A woman will never run from responsibilities. And she will never run away during hard times. That’s the moment when she realizes how strong, courageous and brave she is. Well done, ladies! We are proud!