March is Women’s History Month, a time set aside to remember and celebrate all of the amazing and life-changing contributions women have made to society. This article will highlight just some of these contributions, focusing on those who are involved in the arts.
Perhaps most famous for her classic role of Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter series, Emma Watson is also well-known for her role as an activist and feminist. Watson has promoted education for girls in countries all around the world, and in 2014 she was appointed as a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador. By giving speeches around the world that work to further promote these rights, Watson has used her position to help improve the conditions of women around the world.
From her popular sitcom Ellen to her roles in movies such as Finding Dory, Ellen Degeneres is adored by people of all ages. During the fourth season of her show, Degeneres came out as a lesbian, and she was also the first openly gay actress to play an openly gay character on TV. Aside from serving as an activist for LGBT rights, Ellen Degeneres has also worked to promote animal rights as well as humanitarianism. Throughout her career, she has won countless award for her work and charitable efforts, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2016.
Aside from her music and her somewhat eccentric dress choices, Lady Gaga is known for her philanthropic work and social activism. She has worked to raise money for areas that have been hit by natural disasters in order to help them rebuild, as well as fought for LGBT right. In addition, Gaga has her own non-profit organization, Born This Way Foundation, which focuses on empowering youth and combatting bullying.
Beyonce is a powerhouse. In 2014, she broke barriers by becoming the highest paid black musician of all time–male or female. In addition, she has made Time Magazine’s list of 100 Most Influential People twice. Beyonce considers herself a “modern-day feminist,” and has contributed to movements such as the Ban Bossy Campaign, which uses television and social media to encourage leadership in girls.
A French fashion designer and businesswoman, Coco Chanel is perhaps most famous for her namesake Chanel brand. In the post-World War I era, Chanel was credited with freeing women from the “corseted silhouette” and promoting a more casual and sporty feminine standard of style. Aside from clothing, Coco Chanel has also had an impact on the jewelry, handbags, and fragrance industries, further developing and changing the image of female fashion.
Diane Von Furstenberg
Diane Von Furstenberg is a famous designer whose brand as well as her fashion career have been focused on women empowerment, using phrases such as “Feel like a woman, wear a dress” and “Proud to be a woman!” as slogans. Aside from her work in fashion, Furstenberg is also a director of the Diller-Von Furstenberg Family Foundation, which works to provide support to nonprofit organizations in areas such as community building, human rights, education, arts, and health. The foundation alo supports the DVF Awards, which are presented annually to four women who showcase leadership, strength, and courage in their commitment to women’s causes.
Sources: happeningmag, justjaredjr, ellentv, from-ua, s-media-cache, amazonaws
How have these women and others influenced the way you view the arts? In what way can we honor individuals such as these during Women’s History Month? Let us know by commenting below!