WHO ROCK THE WORLD? WOMEN, OF COURSE
Happy International Women’s Day!
“I will not be another flower, picked for my beauty and left to die. I will be wild, difficult to find, and impossible to forget.”
Erin Van Vuren
It all began in the early 1900s. Did you know, the first observance of a Women’s Day was reportedly held on February 28, 1909 in New York, at the suggestion of one Theresa Malkiel?
The following year, another step for womankind was taken, this time at an International Woman’s Conference in Copenhagen, when another socialist Luise Zietz proposed the establishment of an annual International Woman’s Day. And in 1911, it was done deal: March 8 officially became the day in the year that we celebrate women’s achievements — socially, economically, culturally and politically. One country after another, this day cottoned on. And in 1975, the United Nations adopted it, and the rest, as they say, is herstory.
Thanks to the Theresa Malkiels and Luise Zietz’s of their time — and the likes before and after them — today is a great day to be alive and witnessing, enjoying and celebrating the fruits of these remarkable, courageous women’s labour and conviction.
So today, we want to say “Thank you!” to the rock stars of feminism, who fought hard for the freedom we experience in many parts of the world, including Singapore, and the power to continue fighting for those parts that still do not. Today, we want to celebrate qualities and strengths of women who care and women who dare.
Happy International Women’s Day!
She believes in her cause and her purpose, and she charges and marches fearlessly and unapologetically towards her goal, to make a dent on the world. Traditionally, when we think of passion, we think fiery red. But it’s a new world, and apparently, the colour yellow represents “new dawn” or “a new wave of feminism”. If nothing else, having another option is never a bad thing.
Passionate Women We Love: Gloria Steinem, Angelina Jolie, Emma Watson
Stone: Fancy intense yellow diamond
Her mantra is: Fall down seven times, get up eight. She doesn’t see failing as a failure, but an opportunity to learn and grow. She does not allow other prejudice and injustice to victimise her. They can try to bury and maybe she will fall and wilt, but one thing’s for sure: She will grow, rise and bloom.
Resilient Women We Love: Oprah Winfrey, Rupi Kaur, Gloria Allred, Elizabeth Gilbert
KIND & COMPASSIONATE
If there’s one thing she has learned in life, through all her successes and failures, it’s this: You don’t have to be mean to win. She believes that there is enough success to go about, and envy is a waste of energy. Together, women are stronger.
Kind, Compassionate Women We Love: Michelle Obama, Maya Angelou, Helen Keller
She cannot and will not be defined by one thing. she believes she can be anything and everything she desires to be, so she does. “Nobody puts Baby in the corner”, remember? (Words uttered in 1987 — by a man. Thank you, Patrick Swayze) Don’t let anyone tell you that you cannot be an author or painter or cellist and be a CEO, too.
Multi-faceted Women We Love: Cate Blanchett, Margaret Zhang, Tina Fey, Jemima Kirke
Stone: Chameleon Diamond
She knows who she is and she is not afraid to be. She understands what her voice can achieve, so she’s not afraid to speak up — for herself and other women. Other people’s opinions are not her reality. And that, dear friends, is freedom and power.
Fearless Women We Love: Coco Chanel, Gloria Allred, Emma Gonzalez, Rosa Parks
Do not mistake her kindness for weakness; her silence as meekness; or her smallness for powerlessness. Grace is neither gentleness nor fragility. Grace is being kind in the face of cruelty. Grace is speaking the right words when it matters. Grace is looking the giant in the eye and seeing the human inside. Grace, ultimately, is to treat herself and others with respect.
Graceful Women We Love: Kate Middleton, Selena Gomez, Malala Yousafzai, Natalie Portman
Stone: Blue Sapphire (main image)