March is National Women’s History Month! What started as just a week in 1980 centered around March 8th has grown into a month-long celebration of the progress and contributions of women in society (but I know what you’re thinking… why not every day of the year?). Celebrate girl power by taking a good look at these 10 awesome quotes coined by great women authors, pioneers, and public figures throughout history. Women can do anything, and these quotes will prove it. Take a minute to share them with your friends, text them to your mom, and say thank you to the amazing women in your life, for being what they are, which is straight up awesome.
(Source: Simon Davis/DFID)
“When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful.” – Malala Yousafzai
An inspiration to young girls, Malala Yousafzai is a Pakistani activist for female education and is the youngest-ever Nobel Prize laureate. She started advocating for human rights as early as eleven years old.
“In order to be irreplaceable, one must always be different.” – Coco Chanel
Coco Chanel took the fashion industry by storm as one of the world’s most successful designers and an iconic business woman, founding the famous Chanel brand. She is known for changing the status quo for women from corseted silhouettes to more comfortable garments, borrowing designs from men’s fashion like suits, and coining the “little black dress.”
“A ship in port is safe, but that's not what ships are built for.” – Grace Hopper
Grace Hopper was a pioneer in computer science and was involved in both the invention of first compiler for a computer programming language and the development of COBOL, one of the first high-level programming languages. An accomplished officer in the U.S. Navy, she was sometimes referred to as “Amazing Grace.”
(Source: U.S. Library of Congress)
“There are years that ask questions and years that answer.” – Zora Neale Hurston
Raised in Eatonville in Orange County, Florida, Zora Neale Hurston was an African-American novelist, short story writer, folklorist, and anthropologist, and was a major figure in the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s. Today, Zora’s life is honored in the annual Zora! Festival, in the heart of Eatonville.
“I keep my ideals, because in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart.” – Anne Frank
In this last line of her famous diary, Anne Frank speaks for human dignity in the face of suffering as she endured the overwhelming tragedies of the German occupation during World War II. Her Diary of a Young Girl is now one of the world’s most widely known books.
“That's the thing about books. They let you travel without moving your feet.” – Jhumpa Lahiri
The daughter of Bengali Indian immigrants, Jhumpa Lahiri is an American author and winner of the Pulitzer Prize in Fiction for her short story collection, Interpreter of Maladies, about the lives of Indians and Indian Americans who are caught between their roots and the "New World."
“As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.” – Audrey Hepburn
Audrey Hepburn was famously a British actress known for movies such as Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Roman Holiday, but was also an ardent humanitarian, receiving notoriety from her work with UNICEF overseas and being presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1992.
(Source: Phil Konstantin)
“We must trust our own thinking. Trust where we're going. And get the job done.” – Wilma Mankiller
In 1985, Wilma Mankiller became the first female principal chief of the Cherokee Nation. She worked toward improving the nation's government, healthcare and education, and after serving ten years, she continued her work as an activist for Native Americans and women across America.
(Source: Guillermo Kahlo | Sotheby's)
“Feet, what do I need you for when I have wings to fly.” – Frida Kahlo
Frida Kahlo is a Mexican painter famous for her self-portraits, receiving wide recognition for her ability to capture the essence of Mexican nationality. She simultaneously became a symbol of strength in feminist circles and minority groups for her honest depictions of the female form and her bravery in relating her life’s struggles.
(Source: Nationaal Archief, Den Haag)
“A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you dream together is reality.” – Yoko Ono
Thought widely known for her relationship with Beatles member John Lennon, Yoko Ono is a Japanese multimedia artist, singer, songwriter, and peace activist in her own right. For over 50 years, she has been a social activist in the fight for feminism, equal rights, and a number of political and environmental issues.