After reading about these legendary women, you’ll know you can contribute towards the society no matter what – you don’t need to be in a specific field, time or environment to make a difference to the world in this lifetime.
P.S. This is according to my refernce of whoever I knew, maybe I might have missed out on something/ somebody but you are always welcome to include your opinions. I’ll be happy to know more but please do not get offened. I don’t believe in caste, creed or race and I’m totally against racism.
1. “Despite everything, I believe that people are really good at heart.” – Anne Frank (1929-1945)
During her stay in Netherlands while hiding from the German forces, Anne Frank, a young jewish girl, was gifted a diary by her father when she was 13. However, her diary was published after her death in Bergen-Belsen concentration camp at the age of 15. The diary served as a unique eye-witness account of life during Holocaust (mass murder of approximately six million Jews during World War II) and it became one of the world’s most read books.
2. “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” – Mother Teresa (1910-1997)
Mother Teresa, the Nobel Peace Prize winner (1979), aimed at looking after those who had nobody to look after them through her own order “The Missionaries of Charity”. She worked tirelessly towards her goal until her ill-health – that included two heart attacks, pneumonia and malaria – forced her to step down in March 1997, following which she took her last breath in September 1997.
3. “In societies where men are truly confident of their own worth, women are not merely tolerated but valued.” – Aung Sang Suu Kyi (1945)
Burmese opposition politician Suu Kyi was under house arrest for 15 years for her pre-democracy campaigning. She only gained release in 2010 following an international campaign to let her free. She won a nobel prize in 1991 where it was said that “Suu Kyi’s struggle is one of the most extraordinary examples of civil courage in Asia in recent decades.”.
4. “I thought it would set us back 50 years if I didn’t win that match. It would ruin the women’s tour and affect all women’s self esteem.” – Billie Jean King (1943)
Billie Jean King, the US tennis legend and the winner of 20 wimbledon titles, famously beat Bobby Riggs in 1973 for a $100,000 prize in “The Battle of the sexes” after he said to her that men were superior athletes.
Princess Diana was a well-loved “people’s princess”. She devoted her life to charity work; she led a nobel Peace Prize-winning campaign to ban landmines.
6. “Democracy is the best revenge.” – Benazir Bhutto (1953-2007)
She was the 11th Prime Minister of Pakistan (1993-1996) and the first woman to head a Muslim state. During her leadership, she ended military dictatorship in her country and fought for women rights. She was assassinated in a suicide attack in 2007.
7. “There are still many causes worth sacrificing for, so much history yet to be made.” – Michelle Obama (1964)
Michelle Obama, the first lady of the United States, was raised in a one bedroom apartment in Chicago before she went on to excel in academics and study at Princeton and Harvard. She is considered the most stylish leading lady after Jackie Kennedy. Currently, she is working on a campaign to fight childhood obesity.
8. “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.” – Oprah Winfrey (1954)
Oprah, a generous Philanthropist, who is today worth $2.7 billion as a famous US talk show host and a media proprietor, was born to a poor single mother in Mississippi.
9. “I think one’s feelings waste themselves in words; they ought all to be distilled into actions which bring results.” – Florence Nightingale (1820-1910)
“The lady with the lamp”, Florence Nightingale, nursed wounded soldiers during the Crimean war. Her passion and dedication to the profession changed public’s perception about this profession. Her insistence on improving sanitary conditions for the patients is believed to have saved many lives.
10. “I’m tough, I’m ambitious, and I know exactly what I want. If that makes me a bitch, okay.” – Madonna (1958)
Madonna has achieved an unprecedented level of power and control for a woman in the entertainment industry. She has sold more than 300 million records of her music and she has turned her hands to songwriting, acting, film-directing and producing, fashion designing and writing children’s books.