She’s so much more.
You have heard it all.
So many of us have tried to define the spirit that is a woman. But we fail to capture the essence of this divine spirit.
History is filled with badass women and so is the present, as will be the future.
Here’s an ode to the ones who rebelled.
Here’s an ode to those who free not only themselves but so many across borders, physical and psychological.
Here are some of them.
1. CHING SHIH- THE QUEEN OF THE SEA
Yes, you read right! This 17th-century queen ruled the seas. She remains a mystery till date. But what is known about her is a solid proof of the fire within her.
The ruler of the Red flag Fleet, a former prostitute, was a leader of over 70,000 men leading them to many successful pirate heists. Upon the death of her husband, she took over the business, reuniting the abandoning pirate groups, setting up some sort of an ad-hoc government with a strict code of conduct, deserting from which would have disastrous ramifications.
The pirates were bound to pay taxes. A large portion of the loot went to the fleet’s collective fund. Rape and unfaithfulness were punishable. She became so strong that the Chinese leadership had no option but to offer her an amnesty in order to stop her. The queen did not bow down and got to keep all of her riches. While the pillages of cities she plundered are questionable, her iron will and strength changed the course of history.
2. VITKA KEMPNER- THE QUEEN OF THE PEOPLE
We all know about the Holocaust. Vitka Kempner, one of the founding members of the Avengers, an all Jewish Partisan group, led a successful armed rebellion against the Nazis by blowing up a train.
This sabotage required the smuggling of a bomb from the ghetto. Vitka led this sabotage and led even more resistances against the Nazis, mobilizing and organizing them into what was known as United Partisan Organization.
But she was more than just an avenger. She helped the survivors and reached out to those trapped in ghettos. She helped many settle in the British-occupied Palestine, where she later settled with her partner Abba.
A true queen and ruler of the hearts.
3. SARLA THAKRAL- THE QUEEN OF THE SKY
At 21, this woman gave wings to her dream. In a society conditioned by patriarchy, she sought to break those stereotypes. Encouraged by her husband, she went on to become the first Indian woman to get an aviation license, successfully piloting a Gypsy Moth, when it was impossible for many women to even think about it. We are talking about India of 1936 where women were relegated to the four walls of the household and their conduct was regulated strictly by patriarchal norms.
She was an inspiration to many.
Due to some unavoidable circumstances like World War II, she had to give up aviation. But she took up painting and ran a successful business.
4. EMMA WATSON- THE QUEEN FOR EQUALITY
Almost everyone on this earth knows Emma Watson. She is quite like Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter movies- strong, resilient, stands up for what she believes in and brave in so many respects. Besides being an awesome Hermione for the largely popular book series, she has played an eclectic range of roles challenging gender inequality, has worked in the pursuit of gender equality.
She is a role model for many around the globe. She has been a vocal feminist, enlightening people about what exactly is feminism and how it is different from man-hating.
After her speech in the UN, she had to face numerous threats but nothing could deter her spirit. “They saw that the minute I stepped up and talked about women’s rights, I was immediately threatened. Within 12 hours I was receiving threats.” She just grows radiant day by day.
Truly, a force to reckon with!
5. JAMEELA JAMIL- THE QUEEN FOR BODY POSITIVITY
This beautiful soul has gone through so much and emerged victorious every time. She has been a vocal advocate of body positivity and has launched the I weigh campaign, to try and encourage talks about body image and to spread her message ‘a woman is more than a number on the weighing machine’. She has struggled with eating disorders and body image issues. She met with an accident at 17 which severely injured her. Nevertheless, she picked herself up, acted in the hit ‘The Good Place’ and modeled for high-end fashion magazines.
She has successfully launched three clothing lines for plus sizes, to make high-end fashion accessible to the larger public.
This woman is spreading love to so many people around the globe and given the times we live in, she is doing a great job as of now. To positivity and loving our bodies!
6. YOU- A QUEEN? YES!
How can you not be on this list? You deserve a spot here!
You have been leading a struggle in your everyday life too. You have been bringing a change too, however small it may be. You make things happen daily. They happen not because of some coincidence but because you make them happen with your sheer grit and determination. You have been fighting so hard. And you are a queen, no doubts about it.
Continue your fight. Continue rebelling. Continue thriving. Continue living. You have the world in your palms. What are you waiting for? Go unleash it!
On that note, give yourself some love with a letter to yourself!