For a nation whose Pride events are often a target for violent bigots, the 2017 election of a lesbian Prime Minister is an important step - but there’s a long way to go.
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Christine de Pizan
When her husband unexpectedly died, she rolled up her sleeves and became one of the greatest authors of the age to keep food on the table. She wrote passionate defenses of her gender (and military treatises!) that were centuries ahead of their time.
Carolina Maria de Jesus
Brash, funny, and difficult, this mother of three wrote her way out of extreme poverty with her uncompromising look at Brazilian society - and was alternately lauded and berated for it.
The only female emperor of China in history, her ruthless rise to power makes Game of Thrones look like a day at the beach.
A phenomenally successful archaeologist who became a fashion icon for wearing men's clothing.
When her husband became deathly ill, this pregnant teen took the reins to become America's first female boat commander - all while fighting off a mutiny and keeping her husband alive.
One of the most infamous libertines of the Renaissance, she cavorted all over Europe to flee her abusive marriage, lived…
Somalia's ballsiest queen, she took power from men either figuratively or literally - by ordering much of the gender castrated.…
Ida Laura Pfeiffer
Starting her travels at 45 years old, this globetrotter became a worldwide sensation for going boldly where no woman had gone before.
When flying cannibal ghosts kidnapped two women, there was no man that could save them. But there was a woman.
Indomitable pirate queen who ran Morocco and ruined Portuguese trade.