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Hello, my name is Nicholas and I am a student at Penn State University. Currently I am enrolled in a Women's Studies course. I need to find 80 distinguished women or feminists of the last century. If you could point me in the right direction or give me some examples it would be greatly appreciated. - Nick

Thanks for your note to Feminist.com. To help you find 80 distinguished women of the last century, here are a few books that I recommend you reference:

  • Black Women in America--an encyclopedia of black women in America edited by Darlene Clark Hine

  • The American Woman's Almanac by Louise Bernikow--which has references to women's history as well as individuals who played a role in women's history.

  • Famous American Women edited by Robert McHenry.
You should be able to find most of these books at the Feminist.com Bookstore.

A few of my favorite women from this century are:

  • Zora Neal Hurston--the novelist
  • Jeanette Rankin--who was the first woman to serve in Congress.
  • Eleanor Roosevelt and Hillary Clinton
  • Fannie Lou Hamer who was instrumental in working with black people in the south to exercise their right to vote.
  • Septima Clark--ditto on the above and she ran trainings out of the back of her beauty salon in South Carolina.
  • Margaret Sanger--who spent years ensuring that women had access to legal birth control.
  • Ellen Bravo--who is the current director of 9to5, The National Association for Working Women.
  • Gloria Steinem--who founded Ms. Magazine among many other things and has never give up.
  • Billye Avery--who is the current president of the National Black Women's Health Project.

    I hope that helps and good luck.


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