Lisa Appignanesi (b. 1946) is a
British-Canadian novelist. She has served as the President of English PEN and
is currently Chair of the Royal Society of Literature.
Among her works are Memory and Desire and Freud’s Women, studies of Freud’s ideas
in relation to women, as well as Mad, Bad
and Sad : A History of Women and the Mind Doctors. The latter won the
2009 Award for the Public Understanding of Science from the British Medical
Christine Stewart (1941-2015) was a
Canadian politician who held various cabinet positions during her career, such
as Secretary of State for Latin America and Africa, and Minister of the
During her time as
Minister of the Environment, she promoted numerous actions for the
environmental protection and against climate change. After leaving politics,
she acted as a special envoy to Cameroon for the Commonwealth Secretary
Léa Roback (1903-2000) was a Canadian feminist and social activist, a pioneer
in her province of Quebec. Her activism focused on combatting racism and
injustice, as well as giving Canadian women the vote.
She helped establish the International Ladies’
Garment Worker’s Union in Montreal and led a strike of 5 thousand women in
1937. She fought for access to education and decent housing in Canada, as well
as for the reproductive rights of women, such as the legality of abortion and
contraception. A foundation was created in her name in 1993, providing
scholarships to socially-committed women.
Nellie McClung (1873-1951)
was a political activist and suffragist from Canada. She was part of “The
Famous Five”, the group of women who led the effort to recognize women as
persons in their country.
She began campaigning for women’s suffrage in
the 1910s, and helped organise the Women’s Political Equality League. Other
causes that she championed were property rights for married women, factory
safety reforms and medical care for school children. She was the founder of the
Federated Women’s Institutes of Canada – the largest adult education movement
in the country.
Kate Beaton (b. 1983) is a Canadian comic artist. She is best known for her webcomic, Hark! A Vagrant, which focuses predominantly on historical figures presented in a humorous way.
She has won numerous prizes for her work, including the Doug Wright Award for Best Emerging Talent and the Harvey Award for Best Online Comics Work. Her work can be found at http://www.harkavagrant.com/.
Emily Stowe (1831-1903) was the first woman to practice medicine in Canada. In addition, she was a strong activist for women’s rights.
She graduated with first-class honours from the Normal School for Upper Canada in 1854, after being refused from other institutions on account of her gender. She became the first female principal of a public school in Upper Canada, but later went on to study medicine in the United States since no Canadian medical school would accept female students. She finally managed to open her own medical practice in Toronto in 1867.
Elisabeth Mann Borgese (1918-2002) was an American-Canadian expert in maritime law and environmental protection, originally from Germany. She was a founding member of the Club of Rome, a non-profit organisation concerned with overcoming the global challenges that humanity faces.
In addition to her environmental work, she was a Professor of Political Science at Dalhousie University. In 1988 she became a Member of the Order of Canada.
Agnes Macphail (1890-1954) was the first female Member of Parliament in Canada. She was elected to the House of Commons in 1921, as a member of the Progressive Party.
She was the first Canadian female delegate to the League of Nations in Geneva. In 1939, she founded the Elizabeth Fry society, which worked on issues affecting women and girls in the criminal justice system.
Marlene Streit (b. 1934) is the most successful amateur
female golfer in Canada. She is the only golfer in history to have won the US,
British, Canadian and Australian Women’s Amateurs.
She has won the Canadian Women’s Amateur 11
times between 1951 and 1973. She was awarded the Bobbie Rosenfeld Award for
best female athlete in Canada a record five times.