Writers, scientists, actresses, politicians or aviators, among alternative professions. There are many women who have changed history in the time they lived and who have played a fundamental role in the development of events . Great revolutionaries who, day by day, broke with what was established in each of their fields and, also, in society. Brave women who paved the way for so many others who, in their fight for equality , have made the world a fairer place .
Today, in Toads and Princesses, we pay a humble tribute to 20 women who marked a before and after in history and who guided (and guide) our steps in the battle for a society in which being a woman does not close doors and machismo . Does not exist. Although, there is no doubt, we still have a lot of work to do.
1. Marie Curie (1867-1934)
Maria Salomea Skłodowska-Curie, better known as Marie Curie, was a scientist of Polish origin (nationalized French) who completely revolutionized the world of science with her work and discoveries. She was a pioneer in the field of radioactivity — she discovered two new elements: Polonium and Radium — she was the first person to receive two Nobel Prizes in different specialties (physics and chemistry). She and she the first woman to hold the position of professor at the University of Paris.
Marie Curie had to fight to become a scientist, since in Poland women could not access university studies . She had to combine the care of her two daughters with her scientific career.
2.Virginia Woolf (1882-1941)
Virginia Woolf was a British novelist, essayist, editor and feminist, considered one of the most outstanding figures of twentieth-century literary modernism . The high quality of her works and the recognition and fame she achieved during her lifetime earned her a position of great relevance in that movement. This made her establish herself as one of the most significant figures in London society during the interwar period.
All her rehearsals, and especially one of them, called A Room of Her Own , helped her become one of the main promoters and a great symbol of the 20th century feminist movement . Virginia Woolf marked a before and after in the thinking of her contemporaries and later writers of hers.
3. Coco Chanel (1883 – 1971)
This great designer completely revolutionized the world of fashion and haute couture in a particularly difficult time: the interwar period. She managed to break out of the corseted clothes of the Belle Époque . She gave a new twist to women’s garments, which, from her irruption in fashion, began to be more comfortable and informal. Thus, she freed women from corsets (literally and metaphorically) and cumbersome adornments that limited her movements.
4. Amelia Earhart (1897-1937)
This American aviator became famous for attempting the first aerial trip around the world over the equator. Amelia became a world hero worshipped by the lots. She promoted a profound discussion on women’s rights and gender equality within the 1st decades of the last century. Earhart founded an organization for women aviators, The Ninety-Nines, in 1929. She was a professor of Aviation at Purdue University, she was a columnist for Cosmopolitan magazine and a campaigner for women’s rights.
Despite not having been able to fulfill her dream of going round the world by plane (although she came terribly about to achieving it), Earhart went down in history for her courage and bravery and for being a pioneer in the fight for gender equality. rights .
5. Frida Kahlo (1907 – 1954)
Mexican painter who has become one of the great references of current feminism . Frida Kahlo not only revolutionized the world of art, but also that of politics. A friend of prominent national and international artists, Frida is so important that she was the first artist from this country to present one of her works at the Louvre Museum. Her political ideas were revolutionary at a time when women were considered the weaker sex .
Frida defended the cause of indigenous people in Mexico and, as part of her national feeling, recovered their symbols and traditions in her work.
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6. Rosa Parks (1913 – 2005)
Rosa Parks was a faithful defender of civil rights in the United States at a time when the separation of people for racial or religious reasons was still predominant in most of the southern states. With just a gesture, Rosa Parks managed to cause the first spark of the Civil Rights movement , refusing to give up her seat to a white on December 1, 1955. It is necessary to remember that, as incredible as it is, the laws of racial segregation of the time could force an African American to give up his seat to any white man.
As recounted in National Geographic , with this act, Rosa Parks, assistant in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, caught the attention of Martin Luther King and, together, they undertook the protests that would lead to the Supreme Court of the United States. United to declare that racial segregation in transportation was against the country’s constitution.
7. Rosalind Franklin (1920-1958)
She was an English chemist and crystallographer , responsible for important contributions to the structure of DNA, RNA, viruses, carbon and graphite. She was a scientist unjustly forgotten by the world of science, strongly masculinized at that time.
8. Anne Frank (1929 – 1945)
9. Carrie Fisher (1956 – 2016)
10. Malala Yousafzai (1997)
11. Sally Ride (1951-2012)
12. Elizabeth Blackwell (1821-1910)
13. Donna Strickland (1959)
14. Emmy Noether (1882-1935)
15.Margaret Hamilton (1936)
16. Ada Lovelace (1815-1852)
17. Mary Mitchell (1818-1889)
18. Sheila Minor (1946)
19. Hedy Lamarr (1914-2000)
20. Margarita Salas (1938-2019)
The biochemist Margarita Salas was a pioneer in the history of science and research in Spain. She was one of the best Spanish scientists of the 20th century and among the many achievements of her career, the discovery of the DNA polymerase of the phi29 bacteriophage virus, crucial in biotechnology, stands out. It allows amplifying DNA more quickly, easily and reliably. It is applied in forensic medicine, oncology and archaeology. Currently, this patent continues to be the most profitable of the CSIC and thanks to it, millions of euros have been invested in research.
Throughout her career she was awarded several times and received both national and international awards. Among them are the Mendel Medal, the Ramón y Cajal National Award, the L’Oreal Unesco Award and the Echegaray Medal. In addition, she was the first Spanish woman elected as a member of the US National Academy of Sciences in 2007.