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Updated by Rajashri Venkatesh on Mar 08, 2017
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10 Amazing Women Who Made History

Time and again women have fought for equal rights and most importantly they have fought for the development of their country. These women have proved to successfully change the way people perceived women and have been an inspirations to the generations to come. Here is a list of such amazing, over-achieving women who made history!

Emily Dickinson

Emily Dickinson, regarded as one of America’s greatest poets, is also well known for her unusual life of self imposed social seclusion. Living a life of simplicity and seclusion, she yet wrote poetry of great power; questioning the nature of immortality and death, with at times an almost mantric quality. Her different lifestyle created an aura; often romanticised, and frequently a source of interest and speculation. But ultimately Emily Dickinson is remembered for her unique poetry. Within short, compact phrases she expressed far-reaching ideas; amidst paradox and uncertainty her poetry has an undeniable capacity to move and provoke.

Helen Keller

Helen Keller (1880-1968) was an American author, political activist and campaigner for deaf and blind charities. Helen became deaf and blind as a young child and had to struggle to overcome her dual disability. However, she became the first deaf-blind person to attain a bachelor’s degree and became an influential campaigner for social, political and disability issues. Her public profile helped de-stigmatise blindness and deafness, and she was seen as a powerful example of someone overcoming difficult circumstances.

Mother Teresa

Mother Teresa (1910–1997) was a Roman Catholic nun who devoted her life to serving the poor and destitute around the world. She spent many years in Calcutta, India where she founded the Missionaries of Charity, a religious congregation devoted to helping those in great need. In 1979, Mother Teresa was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and became a symbol of charitable, selfless work. In 2016, Mother Teresa was canonised by the Roman Catholic Church as Saint Teresa.

Margaret Thatcher

Margaret Thatcher (1925-2013) was Britain’s first female prime minister (1979-90). She was known for her tough uncompromising, conservative political views, and became dubbed as ‘The Iron Lady’. On the UK domestic front she instituted many free market reforms, implemented the controversial poll tax and reduced the power of trades unions. In international affairs, she cultivated a close relationship with American President Ronald Reagan and also developed a working relationship with Russian leader Mikhail Gorbachev as the Cold War drew to a close.

Anne Frank

Anne Frank (1929-45) was a young Jewish girl who perished in the Holocaust. During the Second World War her family were forced to hide from the Gestapo, and in the cramped conditions, she kept a diary of her experiences and thoughts. After the war, her father Otto Frank discovered her diary and, struck by her maturity and depth of feeling, published it – originally under the title ‘Diary of A Young Girl‘ – later as “Diary of Anne Frank”. Anne Frank’s diary has become one of the most famous records of the Holocaust and has helped to give a human story behind the dreadful Holocaust statistics.

Helena Rubinstein

Helena Rubinstein was an entrepreneur and philanthropist born on December 25, 1872, in Krakow, Poland. In 1902, she started her business career in Australia distributing a beauty cream that her mother had used. She soon founded a beauty salon and manufactured cosmetics, working hard to expand her business at every turn. Rubinstein opened salons in London and Paris, and when World War I began she moved to America. Her beauty business grew into a worldwide cosmetics empire, and she eventually created the Helena Rubinstein Foundation in 1953 to fund organizations for children's health. She died on April 1, 1965, in New York City.

Marie Curie

Born Maria Sklodowska on November 7, 1867, in Warsaw, Poland, Marie Curie became the first woman to win a Nobel Prize and the only woman to win the award in two different fields (physics and chemistry). Curie's efforts, with her husband Pierre Curie, led to the discovery of polonium and radium and, after Pierre's death, the further development of X-rays. She died on July 4, 1934.

Benazir Bhutto

Benazir Bhutto was born on June 21, 1953, in Karachi, Pakistan, the child of former premier Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. She inherited leadership of the PPP after a military coup overthrew her father's government and won election in 1988, becoming the first female prime minister of a Muslim nation. In 2007, she returned to Pakistan after an extended exile, but, tragically, was killed in a suicide attack.

Oprah Winfrey

Media giant Oprah Winfrey was born in the rural town of Kosciusko, Mississippi, on January 29, 1954. In 1976, Winfrey moved to Baltimore, where she hosted a hit television chat show, People Are Talking. Afterward, she was recruited by a Chicago TV station to host her own morning show. She later became the host of her own, wildly popular program, The Oprah Winfrey Show, which aired for 25 seasons, from 1986 to 2011. That same year, Winfrey launched her own TV network, the Oprah Winfrey Network.

Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafzai was born on July 12, 1997, in Mingora, Pakistan. As a child, she became an advocate for girls' education, which resulted in the Taliban issuing a death threat against her. On October 9, 2012, a gunman shot Malala when she was traveling home from school. She survived, and has continued to speak out on the importance of education. She was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize in 2013. In 2014, she was nominated again and won, becoming the youngest person to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.