By Victoria Richards
It can feel like one of the hardest decisions you’ll ever have to make, choosing what to call your baby. Some people decide well in advance, others not until they reach the end of the six-week deadline for registering the birth.
For many, it’s girls’ names that cause the biggest number of sleepless nights. “They all sound like flowers,” one friend said to me recently, when deliberating over what to call her newborn. “I want her to have a name that says, “I am strong!’”
With that in mind, here are 11 baby names inspired by some of the greatest feminist icons in history.
Journalist and activist Gloria Steinem was born in 1934, and has spent her life campaigning for women’s rights.
Artist Frida Kahlo smoked, boxed and dressed like a man when she felt like it – even when posing for a family portrait.
The iconic English suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst chained herself to railings and went on hunger strikes to campaign for votes for women.
French writer and philosopher Simone de Beauvoir’s iconic 1949 work, ‘The Second Sex’, heralded the start of second-wave feminism.
Naomi Wolf’s 1991 bestseller, ‘The Beauty Myth’, called out modern beauty as a social construct dictated and supported by men. It’s often regarded as one of the most influential books of the 20th century.
Germaine Greer was a leader of the women’s movement in the 1960s and 1970s. She wrote ‘The Female Eunuch’ in 1970,which argued that sexual liberation is the key to women’s liberation.
“It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognise, accept, and celebrate those differences,” said poet Audre Lorde, who explored sexuality and female identity.
American poet and civil rights activist Maya Angelou was a fierce advocate for gender and race equality. In 2011, she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Ruth Bader-Ginsburg is the second-ever woman to serve on the US Supreme Court – and a longtime champion of women’s rights.
Mary Wollstonecraft was a feminist philosopher and writer who fought for gender equality, as far back as 1792.
Roxane Gay, who wrote ‘Bad Feminist’ in 2014, is a commentator on the ways in which feminism intersects with race, religion, history and heritage.