Midweek @ Musings: International Women’s Day + 1

Yesterday, March 8, was International Women’s Day.  I had planned a completely different post for today, which tied in with International Women’s Day, but my plans haven’t quite come together yet.  So if it’s all right with you (and, frankly, even if it’s not), we’re going to keep the International Women’s Day celebration going.

The nice thing about being a day late is that I can bring you all kinds of content you might have missed!  Here are some links that caught my eye:

Florinda honored women’s history by pointing out several present day battles that we hoped would be history by now.

Wendy gave a shout out to three women writers who have inspired her in some way.

The Guardian reviewed a book about daring women’s heroines, which sounds really interesting.

Joan posted Maya Angelou’s poem, Phenomenal Woman.  I love this.

And then I got lost in The Guardian‘s list of Top 100 Women. What an inspiring group!! The list includes Aung San Suu Kyi (politics), Rachel Maddow (television), Madonna and Lady Gaga (music), writers like Maya Angelou, Margaret Atwood, and JK Rowling, and so many more phenomenal women.

This got me thinking about my personal list of phenomenal women.  My literary inspiration is easy: I have a page devoted to my favorite authors, and I just wrote about Jane Austen.  But women have shaped other aspects of my life, too.  My early feminist leanings were informed and inspired by Betty Friedan’s The Feminine Mystique.  My high school English teacher showed me what a strong, independent woman looked like.  At university, a faculty advisor was a role model for women’s ways of leading.  In my professional life, the company’s first woman vice president not only broke the glass ceiling, but made it OK for women to wear trousers in the workplace (yay!).   A church pastor taught me about feminist theology, God and gender, and use of inclusive language.

And I could go on … the point is, none of these women would have made a list like The Guardian’s.  They weren’t famous, or even all that well-known in their communities.  But in their own way, each had a profound impact on at least one person.  Which means that each of us, in our own ways, can do the same for today’s young women.   And we must.  The next generation is depending on it.

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