Here are seven quotes by, and facts about, inspiring and strong women.
1. ‘Adventure is worthwhile in itself.’
American aviator Amelia Earhart (1897-1937) was the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic in 1932, and the first person to fly solo over the Pacific in 1935.
2. ‘And there’s grace in being willing to know and hear others. This, for me, is how we become.’
While studying at Princeton University in the US, former US-First Lady Michelle Obama suddenly became aware by the fact that she was the only black woman in the hall. In her memoir, Becoming, she writes about how that felt as well as many other experiences from her life.
3. ‘At the end of the day, we can endure much more than we think we can.’
The work of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo (1907-1954) has many surreal elements. All her life she suffered from medical complications that resulted from an accident, and she had a turbulent relationship with artist Diego Rivera, whom she married twice.
4. ‘My favorite thing is to go where I’ve never been.’
American photographer Diane Arbus (1923-1971) never shied away from anything to make her own, sometimes alienating, images of the ‘misfits’—transvestites, giants, dwarfs, nudists—that fascinated her so much.
5. ‘You cannot find peace by avoiding life.’
British author Virginia Woolf (1882-1941) was well-known in the literary circles of London, UK. She lived for writing and ran a publishing house with her husband. She enjoyed life intensely, but at the same time suffered from mood swings.
6. ‘You don’t always have to be doing something. You can just be, and that’s plenty.’
American author Alice Walker came into the spotlight with her book The Color Purple, for which she won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. But she is also just as well known for her efforts to ensure equal rights for all.
7. ‘You’ve got to learn to leave the table when love’s no longer being served.’
American singer-songwriter, musician and civil rights activist Nina Simone (1933-2003) trained from childhood to become a classical pianist. She led a turbulent life and did not always make it easy for herself and others. You can watch the biographical documentary film, What Happened, Miss Simone? on Netflix.*
(*Please note that the Netflix library differs per country and that this program may not be available to watch worldwide.)
Text Caroline Buijs, Translation Julia Gorodecky, Photography Getty Images