How are Boss Women breaking the barriers since 18th century?
The fight for women’s right has been fought for over 250 years now. Much has changed since the first time Mary Wollstonecraft, the advocate of women’s rights penned her teartise, “A vindication of the rights of woman” in 1792.
Yet, even today, in several parts of the world, women struggle to be treated as humans. They struggle to snatch control of their own lives and bodies from the hands of those who claim to ‘love’ and ‘protect’ them. Often, archaic traditions treat women as if they were the property, the priced jewel of one or the other man-her father at first and then, her husband. The thing to understand here is, no matter how regal that might sound, humans are not things to be possessed or owned. Every individual is their own person and they are the ones who get to live their lives the way they seem fit. Somehow, this seems to be a very difficult concept to understand for the majority of the population.
Yet, amongst all the hatred, the fight to gain control, the screaming and squabbling to get the last word, some women worked tirelessly and quietly to achieve heights of happiness and success that no one in their right minds thought was possible. These women have inspired millions of women all over the world, and continue to do so, to simply keep fighting and keep working towards the kind of life and freedom one wishes to have.
Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) is a hub of inspiring women in a field where they are constantly underestimated and underhanded. Women like Minal Sampath, Anuradha TK, Ritu Karidhal, Moumita Dutta, Nandini Harinath, Kristi Faujdar, N Valarmathi and Tessy Thomas who have been instrumental in India’s revolutionary Mangalyaan and Chandrayaan projects, simply prove the fact that women, if they continue fighting, can achieve any milestone in life.
Then there are goddesses like Lilly Singh (aka Superwoman) who fought through depression, racism and sexism to be one of the highest paid YouTuber for several years straight, having a steady audience in the comedy genre and recently, she became the first Indian origin woman to have been given a late night talk show contract on American television.
When it’s all said and done, I want to know that I stood for something.
— Lilly Singh (@IISuperwomanII) February 28, 2019
Rega Jha, on the other hand, is a prime example of young women living and building their dreams with their own hands. She held the reigns of Buzzfeed India at just 22 years of age. Buzzfeed has since then become the favorite media and entertainment company of millions of Indians. Even today, she continues to inspire and move hundreds of thousands of people through her wise yet absolutely real social media posts.
this women's day, instead of pushing your brand via a hashtag or video or pink banner, get that PR cred by releasing your employee stats instead. do you have as many women in management as men? are they paid as well? does your workplace retain women as long as men? spill, babes.
— Rega Jha (@RegaJha) March 8, 2018
Poets, authors, artists and activists Harnidh Kaur, Rupi Kaur, Priyanka Paul, and Gurmehar Kaur, on the other hand, take over the rather softer, subtler side of the fight. The fight to normalize free speech for women, without them getting hundreds of rape threats, the fight to normalize simple natural processes like menstruation and sex. Harnidh Kaur and Rupi Kaur’s poetry has moved millions of readers across the globe while touching on sensitive topics such as sexual and domestic abuse, body positivity and love.
Priyanka Paul’s magazine BedX is creating waves amongst the Indian youth while providing some much needed sex-ed in a fun, interactive and artistic fashion.
— Priyanka Paul (@artwhoring) October 7, 2018
Gurmehar Kaur’s “Small acts of freedom” is a historical narrative spanning seventy years that elegantly expresses the love, courage, and resilience that people of the South Asian region have shown in this coldly violent and tumultuous period in the history of the region.
This fruit of feminism is not limited to the academic creme de la creme or the status quo only. This wave can be seen in the streets and even in places where poverty and darkness muddles an already murky dynamic. This fire to seize their lives in their own hands can be seen in the women who have taken to driving e-rickshaws themselves in Delhi. This strength can be seen in Shanti Devi from India, the first truck mechanic of the country. These women do everything that is considered to be a “man’s job”.
These achievements in no shape or form display a complete overthrowal of the oppressive mechanisms that have plagued our society. However, these are stories of courage and strength, and my only hope is that in the marvellous stories of these women, we find the determination and strength of will to become exemplary in our own rights.
And even if you feel like giving up, always remember that your hustle is not for you alone. It is a source of inspiration for the women around you, for those who need to be reassured that excellence is tangible, no matter the odds.