Written By: Sabrina Cabrera Rivera

 

It is International Women’s Month and we are here to celebrate our ladies, bellas, theys & thems, our mamas, our Amigas, and ourselves. It is a new age where we are able to be proud to be strong independent jefas making our way through the world and taking up space!

 Let us share a few of the infinite amazing women that made a mark in history.

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(picture of Valentina Tereshkova, picture courtesy of ITAR-TASS/Mikhail Klimentyev)

1.Valentina Tereshkova

            Tereshkova was the first woman in space. On June 16, 1963, she was launched in the spacecraft Vostok 6, which completed 48 orbits in 71 hours. Although she had no pilot training, Tereshkova was an accomplished amateur parachutist and on this basis was accepted for the cosmonaut program when she volunteered in 1961.

 

 

(Komako Kimura in New York City 1917, picture courtesy of April mag)

2.Komako Kimura

In 1912, she created and published a feminist magazine, “The New True Women,” and that same year she co-founded “The Real New Women’s Association,” a suffragist group in Japan. All the while, she continued writing plays and ran two theaters, choosing to star in theatrical productions specifically designed to bring attention to her chosen causes. Kimura was a prominent Japanese suffragist that marched on Fifth Avenue in NYC with New York’s most noted feminist. Back in 1917, Kimura visited the US to visit with leaders of the women’s rights movement.

 

 

(Marina Ginestà on rooftop of Hotel Colón, picture courtesy of Aldia News)

3.Marina Ginestà

A French Veteran of The Spanish Civil War. She became famous due to the photo taken by Juan Guzmán on the rooftop of the original Hotel Colón in Plaça de Catalunya, Barcelona, during the July 1936 military uprising in Barcelona. As she was a reporter, it was the only time Ginestà was carrying a gun. As the war broke out, she served as a reporter and a translator assisting Mikhail Koltsov, a correspondent of the Soviet newspaper Pravda.

 

(Sarla Thakral and the first plane she flew)

4.Sarla Thakral

Thakral was the first Indian woman to fly. She earned an Aviation Pilot License in 1936 at the age of 21 in a sari.  After being widowed at age 24, she sought to apply for a commercial pilot’s license, but was stymied in doing so, due to the breakout of World War II. She later became an artist and entrepreneur and lived to the age of 94.

 

(Dr.Wangari Maathai, Picture courtesy of Gorbis/Getty Images)

5.Dr.Wangari Maathai

Dr. Wangari Maathai was the first African woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. She was also the first female scholar from East and Central Africa to take a doctorate (in biology), and the first female professor ever in her home country of Kenya. She founded the Green Belt Movement in 1977 in which the campaign encouraged women to plant trees in their local environments and to think ecologically. This movement spread to other African countries, and contributed to the planting of over thirty million trees.

 

(Hedy Lamarr working on the mobile phone technology she later patented, Picture courtesy of The New Yorker)

6.Hedy Lamarr

An Actress and an inventor. Hedy Lamarr patented an idea that later became the crutch of both secure military communications and mobile phone technology. Hedy and composer George Antheil patented what they called the “Secret Communication System” in 1942. The idea was meant to solve the problem of enemies blocking signals from radio-controlled missiles during World War II. This involved changing radio frequencies simultaneously to prevent enemies from being able to detect the messages. While the technology of the time prevented the feasibility of the idea at first, the advent of the transistor and its later downsizing made Hedy’s idea very important to both the military and the cell phone industry.

 

(LGBT pioneer Sylvia Rivera leads an ACT-UP march past New York's Union Square Park on June 26, 1994, Picture Courtesy of Justin Sutcliffe—AP)

 7.Sylvia Rivera

Rivera was a Venezuelan-Puerto Rican trans woman LGBT activist. She fought tirelessly for Trans right and is often credited for the “T” in LGBT. Together with Marsha P. Johnson, Slyvia was able to create S.T.A.R (Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries), which helped provide a home for trans people living on the street during the 1970s New York.

 

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These seven women went down in history for their actions. They were the first of many to help create a safe space and give us the opportunities for a better future. Everyday there is a woman, who is fighting for their right to be seen and have a voice.

 

 This year we are taking up space and making ourselves heard, punto!

 

 

 

marzo 17, 2021 — Sabrina Cabrera Rivera

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