A reader asked for examples of historical disabled badasses. I give them an earful.
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One half of the odd couple of Crimean nursing - the jolly black businesswoman who swore by folk remedies, in stark contrast to Florence Nightingale's by-the-book Victorian approach to medicine.
This stubborn empress led her native Ethiopia to do the unthinkable - defeat one of the major European powers in war.
After decades of gaslighting and emotional abuse at the hands of her in-laws, this iron-willed woman survived being shot four times point blank, won a separation from her husband, and became one of the most respected business icons in New Orleans.
Annie Jump Cannon
This astronomer threw off all the social conventions of her day to pursue her one true calling: the stars.
Matilda of Tuscany
Fiery defender of the pope who made kings kneel before her.
This heroine of South America and Italy fought in numerous civil wars alongside her husband, Giuseppe Garibaldi, often while pregnant…
Te Puea Herangi
The reluctant royal who became the Maori's greatest leader.
This undefinable adventurer's life burnt bright but short: a wildcard of the Algerian revolution, she survived an assassination attempt by sabre, and died in a freak desert flood.
The "Last of the Aboriginal Tasmanians" (she wasn't) used brains, brawn, and sheer will to carve a place for herself, even as the world was collapsing around her.
When the end of an era was at hand, this samurai woman refused to go gently.