Inspiring Thursday: Hedy Lamarr

Born in 1914 and raised in the cultural Jewish quarter of Vienna, Hedwig Eva Maria Kiesler, better known as Hedy Lamarr, was the daughter of a pianist and a bank director with a fascination for technology. Most famous for her career as a glamorous actress, few people know of the great inventions that Lamarr worked …

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Inspiring Thursday: Arundhati Roy

Indian novelist and political activist, Arundhati Roy, best known for her novel “The God of Small Things” and for her involvement in human right issues, also had several odd jobs before starting her career as a writer. At one point, she was an actress, film-maker and even an aerobics instructor.

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Inspiring Thursday: Pavan Amara

“I decided to start a charity. I didn’t do it for philanthropic reasons or because I wanted to be the next Mother Theresa. It was actually a selfish move – I had no other option, and I did it for my own welfare.”

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Inspiring Thursday: Bella Abzug

Bella Savitzky, or “Battling Bella”, was born in 1920 in New-York city from Russian Jewish immigrant parents. Already at an early age, she was fearless, bold and outspoken, and would not let anyone (boys included) beat her in any competition. When a father died, Abzug was aged 13 and she was told that she could …

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Inspiring Thursday: Marichuy

“We, the indigenous people, say we don’t agree with this system—to be exploited, to have them continue to destroy our communities… It should be the people who give the orders and the government that obeys.” (Marichuy)

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Inspiring Thursday: Ninotchka Roska

Referring to herself as a “transnational Filipina”, Ninotchka Roska is a prolific writer, author of eleven books, journalist, as well as a fervent advocate for women´s rights and liberation. She has won several awards, including the American Book Award for Excellence in Literature for her famous book Twice Blessed.

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Inspiring Thursday: Nawal El Saadawi

“For me feminism includes everything. It is social justice, political justice, sexual justice… It is the link between medicine, literature, politics, economics, psychology and history. Feminism is all that. You cannot understand the oppression of women without this.”

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Inspiring Thursday: Kumari Jayawardena

Leading feminist figure, activist and academic, Kumari Jayawardena was born in 1931 and raised in Sri Lanka. She decided to continue her higher education in the London School of Economics, in the UK, where she graduated from political science and finished her Ph.D. on the labour movement in Ceylon in 1964.

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