March is Women’s History Month, so it’s time to give a hand to the women who are changing the world with their talents, activism and careers. We're highlighting ten modern leading ladies and feisty feminists who are supporting and helping other women.
+ Lena Dunham
Lena Dunham of “Girls” often speaks about body image and how the you-must-be-stick-thin attitude has got to go. “The only topic on which I’m almost political about is what I think that this country is doing to women and their body image,” she said in an interview with Time. “I was a babysitter before I was working in film, and I would hear like 7-year-old girls that I babysat say, ‘I think I need to go on a diet,’ and it cracks my heart open.” But she also got political with Lesley Gore’s “You Don’t Own Me” voting PSA -- which encouraged women to vote in order to protect their rights, especially their reproductive rights.
+ Malala Yousafzai
Teenage activist Malala almost lost her life for her cause -- making sure all girls receive an education. Thankfully she survived the Taliban’s assassination attempt on her. Her heroism has made her a household name and got her crowned mtvU’s 2012 Woman of the Year.
+ Ellen DeGeneres
Ellen DeGeneres is the definition of awesomeness, and she uses her awesomeness especially well for LGBT activism. Ellen often highlights inspiring stories on her show, and recently she wrote a brief to the Supreme Court to legalize marriage equality, saying, “I hope the Supreme Court will do the right thing, and let everyone enjoy the same rights. It’s going to help keep families together. It’s going to make kids feel better about who they are. And it is time.”
+ Senator Elizabeth Warren
The 2012 elections got us more women in the Senate than ever before, including Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts. Speaking about women’s rights while in a debate with opponent Scott Brown, she said, “I am a mother of a daughter and a grandmother of granddaughters. This is about their future. I want to be blunt. We should not be fighting about equal pay for equal work and access for birth control in 2012.”
+ Sheryl Sandberg
Sherly Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, landed at #10 in Forbes’s “The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women.” This month she also published her book, "Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead” to encourage women to attain more leadership roles and reach their full potentials. I “Like” that!
+ Jennifer Lawrence
Like Lena Dunham, Jennifer has spoken out about body image issues, saying, “I’m never going to starve myself for a part…I don’t want little girls to be like, ‘Oh, I want to look like Katniss, so I’m going to skip dinner.’” She also took part in One Billion Rising, a campaign to stop violence against women, and of course plays the kickass Katniss Everdeen in "The Hunger Games" films.
+ Charlize Theron
Charlize Theron took part in One Billion Rising with Jennifer Lawrence, but this is far from her first foray into women’s rights. In 2004, she also took part in the pro-choice event March For Women’s Lives, along with fellow lister Ellen DeGeneres, singers Christina Aguilera and P!nk, and 1.4 million other women’s rights activists.
+ Selena Gomez
Selena Gomez helps young girls the world over with her involvement in UNICEF. She’s also UNICEF’s youngest celebrity ambassador, showing that no matter what your age, you can make a diff. In addition to that, she’s a strong supporter of Malala and girls’ education, and for a while she changed her Twitter pic to an image of Malala.
+ Tavi Gevinson
Tavi might still be in high school, but she’s already gotten a global audience with her Rookie Mag, which discusses issues of importance to a young and female audience. Now, that's not a rookie thing to do! On top of that, she joined Lena Dunham and others for Lesley Gore’s “You Don’t Own Me” PSA, which encouraged voting and pushed for a full line of women’s reproductive rights.
This “Independent Woman” started out with the all-female band Destiny’s Child and kept that up by performing only with women at the 2013 Super Bowl. Beyonce also recently co-founded Chime For Change, which supports girls and women in the areas of education, health and justice. Bow down.
Which women are you celebrating this month? Let us know in the comments, or Tweet us!
Play Half The Sky
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Chime For Change
Get involved with Chime for Change to empower girls and women in the areas of health, education and justice!