Pioneers of Female Politics

Former U.S. Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm was a true political pioneer

With over seventy years of feminist involvement in global politics, the feminist bloc has chalked down a big number of successes and achievements in the political field. These achievements can be traced down to the few women and men, who fought to keep the notion of feminism and female involvement in politics alive despite the numerous setbacks, backlashes and critiques they faced from most people around the world.

These people despite the colossal obstacles they faced were very resolute in their decision to see female involvement in the political world. These decisions taken by a few people, paved the way for the current level of feminine participation in the world today and these trailblazers need to be celebrated for the vital part they played in demonstrating the importance of involving females in politics and leadership.


Janeatte Rankin, Pioneer of Female Politics
Jeannette Rankin was the only member of Congress to vote against the U.S. entering World War I and World War II.

Jeannette Rankin

Jeannette Rankin was a Montana lawmaker and also the first female to be voted to Congress. After being elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1916, she expressed her optimism about the future of more female politicians being voted into power after her. “I may be the first woman member of Congress, but I won’t be the last”, she stated.  Jeannette Rankin due to her groundbreaking efforts and contribution to politics in the United States led more women into involving themselves in politics. Jeannette Rankin died in 1973 after making enormous contributions to the feminist political scene.


Michelle Bachelet
Verónica Michelle Bachelet Jeria, Former President of Chile and United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

Michelle Bachelet

Michelle Bachelet was the first female president of Chile. She was elected in 2006 after being away in exile, fleeing from the country’s military dictatorship in 1975. She was tortured and imprisoned by the military regime of Augustine Pinochet. She returned to Chile in 1979, four years after being in exile, and became involved with the state’s Socialist Party. In 2002, Michelle Bachelet was appointed as the defence minister, making her the first female to occupy that position in Chile. In 2006, the Socialist Party chose Michelle to run as its presidential candidate and she won by a close margin and became the first Chilean female president. Strategically steering the affairs of the country during the international financial crisis in 2008, Michelle Bachelet also provided financial support to low-income families and made early childhood education better in Chile. Michelle Bachelet at some point also became the executive director of the United Nations Women whose main tenets are to spread gender equity and women empowerment around the globe.


Ellen Johnson
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Former President of Liberia and Nobel Laureate

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf:

Another important personality who made impeccable strides in the world of female politics is the Harvard-educated first female president of Liberia who also doubles as the first female president in Africa, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. She assumed the role as president of Liberia in 2005 after a series of military coups, violence and a civil war occurred in Liberia. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf received a Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 in reference to her efforts in steering the affairs of a war-torn country back to the path of political stability. One of the outstanding achievements of the former Liberian President is her efforts and dedication in the fight against corruption in Africa.


Sirimavo Bandaranaike, Pioneers of Female Politics
Sirima Ratwatte Dias Bandaranaike, World’s First Female Prime Minister

Sirimavo Bandaranaike

Sirimavo Bandaranaike of Sri Lanka is the world’s first woman to occupy the role of Prime Minister in her country and in the world. She was elected into such an esteemed office in the second half of the year 1960 after her husband was assassinated in 1959 by a Buddhist monk. She served as Prime Minister in Sri Lanka for twelve non-consecutive years and in 1994, she was reappointed by her daughter, Chandrika Kumaratunga, to serve in the same position as Prime Minister.


Looking at the efforts made by women in politics gives the world a whole different perspective and examples of how females in the topmost political positions have piloted the affairs of their respective countries with composure. Despite the huge gap that has been created by male dominance in politics, the Female Political Pioneers mentioned above have proven that it’s not impossible to achieve such a goal.

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