When Japan's seaweed production suffered a crippling year, this scientist's work on commercial cultivation helped save the entire nation.
Kathleen Mary Drew-Baker
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Revolutionized the field of mathematics, yet was persecuted for being Jewish and paid a pittance for her visionary teaching work.
This undefeated half-Spaniard fencer was a household name in the 1800s - only to vanish into retirement (and obscurity) when she ran out of people to fight.
An Inuit woman so strong nobody could even beat her lice in arm-wrestling, her story just gets stranger the closer you look.
Ida B. Wells
One of the first anti-lynching advocates, she risked her life for decades to report on the truth when nobody would believe her.
When her brother was killed, this pharaoh took her time cooking up revenge.
Marguerite de la Rocque
Stranded by her cruel relative on an abandoned Canadian island (literally named the Isle of Demons), she survived for two years by hunting animals and eventually made it back to France.
She traded a life of privilege for one spent fighting for justice on both literal and political battlefields so tirelessly that even exiling her five times couldn't keep her down.
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.
When her father died, leaving her lower-class family in debt, this indomitable woman worked tirelessly and became one of history's greatest fossil collectors.
An unbeatable warrior princess who just wanted to have kids - and founded a new nation in her quest to…