Women’s History Month 2018 Quotes: 18 Inspirational Sayings By Influential Women

The United States celebrates Women’s History Month in March, marking the many historic and contemporary contributions of women to society. The month was recognized to remember the victories, struggles, and stories of women from different spheres.

The commemoration first began in the 1800s with female factory workers in New York City protesting over working conditions. Congress established Women’s History Month in 1987.

In honor of the occasion, the following are 18 inspiring quotes by influential women:

1. “There is a great stir about colored men getting their rights, but not a word about the colored women; and if colored men get their rights, and not colored women theirs, you see the colored men will be masters over the women, and it will be just as bad as it was before. So I am for keeping the thing going while things are stirring; because if we wait till it is still, it will take a great while to get it going again.” — Sojourner Truth, women’s rights activist

2. “A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle.” — Gloria Steinem, activist and journalist

3. “Excellence is the best deterrent to racism or sexism.” — Oprah Winfrey, actress and host

4. “I do know one thing about me: I don’t measure myself by others’ expectations or let others define my worth.” —  Sonia Sotomayor, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court

5. “I have the right of education. I have the right to play. I have the right to sing. I have the right to talk. I have the right to go to market. I have the right to speak up.”—  Malala Yousafzai, activist

Malala Yousafzai Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai displays her medal and diploma during the Nobel Peace Prize awards ceremony at the City Hall in Oslo, Norway, on Dec. 10, 2014. Photo: Odd Anderson/AFP/Getty Images

7. “Some people ask: ‘Why the word feminist? Why not just say you are a believer in human rights, or something like that?’ Because that would be dishonest. Feminism is, of course, part of human rights in general – but to choose to use the vague expression human rights is to deny the specific and particular problem of gender. It would be a way of pretending that it was not women who have, for centuries, been excluded. It would be a way of denying that the problem of gender targets women. That the problem was not about being human, but specifically about being a female human.” – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, author

8. “The problem for all women is we’re identified by how we look instead of by our heads and our hearts.” — Gloria Steinem, journalist

9. “Anything’s possible if you’ve got enough nerve.” — J.K. Rowling, author

10. “Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible’!” — Audrey Hepburn, British actress

11. “Human rights are women’s rights, and women’s rights are human rights.” — Hillary Clinton, 2016 presidential candidate

12. “I am a trans woman. My sisters are trans women. We are not secrets. We are not shameful. We are worthy of respect, desire, and love. As there are many kinds of women, there are many kinds of men, and many men desire many kinds of women, trans women are amongst these women. And let’s be clear: Trans women are women.” – Janet Mock, author and transgender activist

13. “I am an example of what is possible when girls from the very beginning of their lives are loved and nurtured by people around them. I was surrounded by extraordinary women in my life who taught me about quiet strength and dignity.” — Michelle Obama, former first lady

14. “Oh, if I could but live another century and see the fruition of all the work for women! There is so much yet to be done.” — Susan B. Anthony, social reformer and suffragette

15. “The civil rights movement that rearranged the social order of this country did not emanate from the halls of the Harvards and the Princetons and the Cornells. It came from simple unlettered people who learned that they had the right to stand tall and that nobody can ride a back that isn’t bent.” — Dorothy Cotton, civil rights activist

16. “We still think of a powerful man as a born leader and a powerful woman as an anomaly.” — Margaret Atwood, Canadian poet

17. “How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes!” — Maya Angelou, poet

18. “Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.” — Mother Teresa, saint

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