Ten Women Who Changed the World

Many amazing women are admired for their dedication and determination. In fact, some of them have made groundbreaking contributions to the world.
Ten Women Who Changed the World

Last update: 12 July, 2021

There are amazing women everywhere. Some might have been outstanding in their own particular field. Others might have performed incredible deeds. In fact, there are even some we don’t even know of.

The women we mention in this article all had something in common. They were all committed to a particular cause or goal. Furthermore, they not only had to challenge themselves but they also had to deal with discrimination.

“At all times in my life there is a woman who takes me by the hand in the darkness of a reality that women know better than men and in which they are better oriented with fewer lights.”

 -Gabriel García Márquez-

These women are a testimony of female strength. They all changed the world in their own way.

Fatima al-Fihri

This woman was the daughter of a powerful merchant named Muhammed al-Fihri. With her father’s money, she could’ve chosen to live an extremely comfortable life. Instead, she chose to be a pioneer. She founded the world’s first university in 859 AD in Fez. Today, we know it as the University of al-Qarawiyyin.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg

This judge and juror who died in 2020 was a symbol of the women’s rights movement, civic resistance, and social justice. Interestingly, she also became a pop icon.

Although she came from a modest family, Ruth Bader Ginsberg achieved terrific success. She even became a member of the Supreme Court of the United States.

Maya Angelou

Her real name was Marguerite Annie Johnson. She was born in St. Louis, Missouri in 1928, a bad time to be both a woman and black.

Nevertheless, she became a poet, writer, singer, and black civil rights activist. However, she’s best known for her series of autobiographies. They proved to be a poignant testimony of her life. President Barack Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2010.

Sofonisba Anguissola

Sofonisba Anguissola was an Italian Renaissance artist. Unlike her male colleagues, she was unable to learn from the great masters. Nevertheless, she managed to teach herself and became a master in the art of portraiture. Consequently, she paved the way for other women to follow her lead.

Susan B. Anthony

Susan B. Anthony was one of those responsible for women being allowed to vote. In fact, she dedicated her entire life to fighting for women’s rights. Along with Elizabeth Cady, she created the American Equal Rights Association (AERA) in 1866. At one point, she was arrested for voting without permission and was fined. However, she never paid the file.

Virginia Apgar

Virginia Apgar was another amazing woman that history often doesn’t credit enough. She trained at the first department of anesthesiology in the United States. Furthermore, she was the first woman to become a professor at the Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons (VP&S). She also made great contributions to the field of obstetrics and pediatrics.

In fact, she invented the Apgar score. This is a method used to assess the health of a newborn baby. The test has greatly reduced incidences of child mortality worldwide.

Jane Austen

This British novelist died when she was only 41 years old. However, in her short life, she managed to write six novels. They were all considered to be emblematic of the social realism of the time.

One of them, Pride and Prejudice, is still admired by critics. Her works continue to captivate both academics and the general public alike.

Josephine Baker

Josephine Baker was, without a doubt, a woman who changed the world. She was considered the first female international star in the world.

She became a French spy in World War II. In addition, she fought all her life for equality for black people. People called her the “Black Venus”.

Jeanne Baret

This daring woman was an adventurer. She posed as a man to be accepted on an expedition to circumnavigate the world. She was a botanist and was helped in her endeavor by a colleague, Philibert Commerçon. However, the two of them were forced to leave the ship at Mauritius, where she stayed for a while. She later returned to France, thus completing her circumnavigation of the globe.

Clara Barton

During the American Civil War, Clara Barton was known as “the angel of the battlefield”. Years later, she founded the American Red Cross. She had an indomitable spirit and felt it was her duty to save lives. In fact, she managed to escape death herself several times during the war.

All these women exhibited both determination and conviction. They managed to keep going and achieve their goals against all odds. Humanity is indebted to them.

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  • Perrot, M., & Saúl, M. (2008). Mi historia de las mujeres. Buenos Aires, Argentina: Fondo de cultura económica.