20 Inspirational Quotes by Women Around the Globe

Celebrate the power of women and our progress toward gender equality with these twenty inspirational quotes by women around the world!

“Let us wage a glorious struggle against illiteracy, poverty and terrorism. Let us pick up our books and our pens; they are the most powerful weapons.”
MALALA YOUSAFZAI | Pakistani Activist for Female Education, Nobel Prize Laureate

“Gender as it functions today is a grave injustice. I am angry. We should all be angry. Anger has a long history of bringing about positive change. But I am also hopeful, because I believe deeply in the ability of human beings to remake themselves for the better.”
CHIMAMANDA NGOZI ADICHIE | Author, Activist, TED Talk star

“If any female feels she needs anything beyond herself to legitimate and validate her existence, she is already giving away her power to be self-defining, her agency.”
bell hooks | Feminist Scholar, Author and Activist

“When we invest in women and girls, we are investing in the people who invest in everyone else.”
MELINDA GATES | Philanthropist

“Tolerance of intolerance is cowardice.”
AAYAN HIRSI ALI | Somali Dutch-American Politician, Feminist & Activist

“Every moment is an organizing opportunity, every person a potential activist, every minute a chance to change the world.”
 DOLORES HUERTA | American Civil Rights Activist, Defender of Farmworkers’ Rights

“If your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough.”
 ELLEN JOHNSON SIRLEAF | Former President of Liberia, first elected female head of state in Africa

“You can be whatever size you are, and you can be beautiful both inside and out. We’re always told what’s beautiful and what’s not, and that’s not right.”
 SERENA WILLIAMS | World’s #1 Women’s Tennis Player

“Men, their rights, and nothing more; women, their rights, and nothing less.”
 SUSAN B. ANTHONY | Leader in the U.S. Women’s Suffrage Movement

“Power can be taken, but not given. The process of the taking is empowerment in itself.”
 GLORIA STEINEM | American Feminist Activist & Journalist

“Peace cannot exist without justice, justice cannot exist without fairness, fairness cannot exist without development, development cannot exist without democracy, democracy cannot exist without respect for the identity and worth of cultures and peoples.”
 RIGOBERTA MENCHU TUM | Guatemalan Feminist, Indigenous Rights Activist and Peacemaker

“The strength of collective decision making and political responsibility is not only a question of recognizing other people’s ability. It is also recognizing one’s own limitations.”
 ARUNA ROY | Indian Social Activist and Right-to-Information Advocate

“I have found that those who do achieve peace never acquiesce to obstacles, especially those constructed of bigotry, intolerance, and inflexible tradition.”
 BENAZIR BHUTTO | Former Pakistani Prime Minsiter, first female to head a Muslim state

“African women in general need to know that it’s okay for them to be the way they are; to see the way they are as a strength, and to be liberated from fear and silence.”
 WANGARI MUTA MAATHAI | Kenyan Environmental Political Activist, First African Female Nobel Peace Laureate

“The world has never yet seen a truly great and virtuous nation because in the degradation of woman the very fountains of life are poisoned at their source.”
 LUCRETIA MOTT | American Abolitionist and Women’s Rights Activist

“We have no other spare or replacement planet. We have only this one, and we have to take action.”
 BERTA CACERES | Honduran Environmental Activist

“If we want to reap the harvest of peace and justice in the future, we will have to sow seeds of nonviolence here and now, in the present.”
 MAIREAD MAGUIRE | Irish Peace Activist and Nobel Peace Laureate

“Spread Love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.”
 MOTHER TERESA | Catholic Saint and Humanitarian

“We must not enable anyone to impose his personal view regarding religion on others by force, oppression, or pressure.”
 SHIRIN EBADI | Iranian Lawyer, Former Judge and Human Rights Activist

“People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is built.”
 ELEANOR ROOSEVELT | Former U.S. First Lady, Diplomat, Humanitarian, Activist

Inspiring words from some of the most brilliant women around the world! Each has left her mark, paving the way for peace, equality, and empowerment.

We’re grateful for their wisdom and inspirational quotes to guide us as we continue to work toward full gender equality and close the global gender gap!

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