Top 10 inspirational women in 2017
Manal al-Sharif: A Saudi woman who got behind the wheel and never looked back. Manal al-Sharif is best known for challenging laws and mores that keep women down in her native country.
Emma Morano: Remembering the world’s oldest person, in the objects she left behind. Emma Morano’s singular achievement in life may have been perseverance. She lived for 117 years, crediting her longevity to raw eggs and her lack of a husband. She died on April 15.
Henda Ayari: 'I could not forget what happened to me that night with him.' Henda Ayari created a storm when she denounced radical Islam. Now, inspired by the #MeToo campaign, she has accused an Oxford professor of rape.
Margot Wallstrom: Sweden’s proponent of ‘feminist foreign policy,’ shaped by abuse. As foreign minister, Margot Wallstrom, who broke free from a violent relationship in her 20s, is challenging assumptions in a traditionally male sphere.
Olive Yang: The female warlord who had C.I.A. connections and opium routes. Born to royalty in Burma, Olive Yang, who died on July 31, rejected her birthright to become a cross-dressing warlord and opium trafficker.
Asli Erdogan: Torn ballet shoes, and a life upended, a novelist of the “dark, pessimistic,” is struggling to process her own grim experience: months in prison.
Letizia Battaglia: A Sicilian photographer of the mafia and her ‘Archive of Blood.’ She chronicled Palermo’s Mafia wars in the 1970s and ’80s for a local newspaper. Now, her images appear in museums and retrospectives.
Sinta Nuriyah: A former first lady presses on for a tolerant, feminist Islam. She carries forth her family’s campaign in Indonesia, holding interfaith events and establishing a network of progressive Islamic boarding schools for girls.
Yu Xiuhua: A Chinese poet’s unusual path from isolated farm life to celebrity. Born with cerebral palsy, she lived a quiet village life. She is now a literary sensation whose vivid, erotic poems are “stained with blood.”
Alice Schwarzer: A pioneering German feminist looks back in anguish. She has battled for women’s rights for years and is stunned that “an old-school sexist” like Donald J. Trump could win the United States presidency.