Part 1/3 of 9 ICONIC WCW’s that I am crushing over this month
February is Black History Month
Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama (born January 17, 1964) is an American lawyer, writer, and former First Lady of the United States. She is married to the 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama, and was the first African-American First Lady. Raised on the South Side of Chicago, Illinois, Obama is a graduate of Princeton University and Harvard Law School, and spent her early legal career working at the law firm Sidley Austin, where she met her husband. She subsequently worked as the Associate Dean of Student Services at the University of Chicago and the Vice President for Community and External Affairs of the University of Chicago Medical Center. Barack and Michelle married in 1992 and have two daughters.
Obama campaigned for her husband’s presidential bid throughout 2007 and 2008, delivering a keynote address at the 2008 Democratic National Convention. She returned to speak at the 2012 Democratic National Convention, and again during the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, where she delivered a speech in support of the Democratic Presidential nominee, and fellow First Lady, Hillary Clinton.
As First Lady, Obama became a fashion icon, a role model for women, and an advocate for poverty awareness, nutrition, physical activity, and healthy eating (Wikipedia)
Gloria Jean Watkins (born September 25, 1952), better known by her pen name bell hooks, is an American author, feminist, and social activist.
She adopted her grandmother’s name as a pen name because her grandmother “was known for her snappy and bold tongue, which [she] greatly admired”. She put the name in lowercase letters “to distinguish [herself from] her great-grandmother.”
The focus of hooks’s writing has been the intersectionality of race, capitalism, and gender, and what she describes as their ability to produce and perpetuate systems of oppression and class domination.
She taught at several post secondary institutions in the early 1980s. South End Press published her first major work, Ain’t I a Woman?: Black Women and Feminism in 1981, though it was written years earlier, while she was an undergraduate student. In the decades since its publication, Ain’t I a Woman? has gained widespread recognition as an influential contribution to feminist thought.
Ain’t I a Woman? examines several recurring themes in her later work: the historical impact of sexism and racism on black women, devaluation of black womanhood, media roles and portrayal, the education system, the idea of a white-supremacist-capitalist-patriarchy, the marginalization of black women, and the disregard for issues of race and class within feminism.
Since the publication of Ain’t I a Woman?, she has become eminent as a leftist and postmodern political thinker and cultural critic. She targets and appeals to a broad audience by presenting her work in a variety of media using various writing and speaking styles. As well as having written books, she has published in numerous scholarly and mainstream magazines, lectures at widely accessible venues, and appears in various documentaries
She is frequently cited by feminists as having provided the best solution to the difficulty of defining something as diverse as “feminism”, addressing the problem that if feminism can mean everything, it means nothing. She asserts an answer to the question “what is feminism?” that she says is “rooted in neither fear nor fantasy… ‘Feminism is a movement to end sexism, sexist exploitation and oppression'”. (Wikipedia) “If any female feels she need anything beyond herself to legitimate and validate her existence, she is already giving away her power to be self-defining, her agency.”
― bell hooks, Feminism is for Everybody: Passionate Politics
Alicia Augello Cook (born January 25, 1981), known by her stage name Alicia Keys, is an American singer, songwriter, pianist and actress. Keys released her debut album with J Records, having had previous record deals first with Columbia and then Arista Records. Keys’ debut album, Songs in A Minor was released in 2001, producing her first Billboard Hot 100 number-one single “Fallin'”, and selling over 12 million copies worldwide. The album earned Keys five Grammy Awards in 2002. Her sophomore album, The Diary of Alicia Keys, was released in 2003, spawning successful singles “You Don’t Know My Name”, “If I Ain’t Got You” and “Diary”, and selling eight million copies worldwide. The duet song “My Boo” with Usher, scored her a second number-one single in 2004. The album garnered her an additional four Grammy Awards in 2005. Later that year, she released her first live album, Unplugged, becoming the first woman to have an MTV Unplugged album debut at number one
Throughout her career, Keys has won numerous awards such as 15 Grammy Awards, and has sold over 35 million albums and 30 million singles worldwide. Billboard magazine named her the top R&B songs artist of the 2000s decade. In 2010, VH1 included Keys on its list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. Billboard magazine placed her number ten on their list of Top 50 R&B/Hip-Hop Artists of the Past 25 Years. In 2012, Keys was ranked 14th on VH1’s 100 Greatest Women in Music list. Keys was ranked at number thirty-three on VH1’s “50 Greatest Women of the Video Era” list, and number 10 on their “100 Sexiest Artists” list. (Wikipedia)